Nestlé UK & Ireland is doubling its commitment to Fairtrade cocoa by making its two-finger Kit Kat brand Fairtrade from January 2013.
Kit Kat four-fingers have been using Fairtrade cocoa since 2010, but the addition of the two-finger variety means Nestlé will purchase an additional 5,300 tons of Fairtrade cocoa.
Fairtrade conducts audits on cocoa farms to stamp out child labor and to ensure fair working conditions and pay for farmers.
Nestlé said that an additional 4,500 cocoa farmers in the Ivory Coast would benefit from Fairtrade Premiums and the Nestlé Cocoa Plan with the addition of the two-finger Kit Kat.
No commitment to certify all products
Nestlé’s rivals Hershey, Ferrero and Mars have made sweeping pledges to source 100% certified cocoa by 2020, but the Swiss firm has yet to commit to sourcing all its cocoa from sustainable sources to a deadline.
The company allowed a probe from the Fair Labor Association (FLA) earlier this year, which found numerous child labor violations across Nestlé’s supply chain.
Nestlé developed an 11-step plan based on the FLA’s recommendations, but was criticized by NGOs that argued the steps related mainly to Nestlé Cocoa Plan, which only covers 15% of Nestlé’s total cocoa supply.
Sourcing & investment
According to the Tropical Commodity Coalition’s 2010 Barometer, just 1.1% of Nestlé’s global 360,000 ton annual cocoa volume comes from certified farms which seek to eradicate child labor.
Nestlé has pledged £65m ($105m) across 10 years on plant science and sustainability initiatives that it claims will help farmers in the largest cocoa producing nation the Ivory Coast.
The Fairtrade organization was recently slammed by a BBC Watchdog program that claimed consumers were being misled as chocolate bars labeled Fairtrade could contain no sustainable cocoa as beans become mixed at ports and at other stages in the supply chain. See HERE.