Chocolate manufacturer becomes TFT’s first cocoa member and commits to 100% traceability back to farm
We are pleased to announce that CÉMOI, France’s biggest chocolate manufacturer, has become our first cocoa member. The partnership aims to allow CÉMOI to provide its customers with a traceable cocoa, which is necessary to respect the environment and enable the improvement of farmers’ lives.
CÉMOI has always worked to buy high quality cocoa beans. The quality of a cocoa bean impacts everybody in the supply chain, from the consumer back to the grower. Quality is a source of value that can ultimately be converted into benefits for everyone.
CÉMOI’s focus starts at farm level. It sources cocoa in Ivory Coast – the biggest cocoa exporter in the world, where cocoa beans are grown exclusively by the country’s smallholder farmers who typically have up to five hectares of land on which to plant. CÉMOI is aiming to work with all the farmers in its supply chain to gain a thorough understanding of the practices they use and help them improve those wherever it makes sense.
To achieve this TFT has supported CÉMOI to develop its new ‘TRANSPARENCE’ programme through which CÉMOI is committing to ensure traceability from the consumer’s chocolate bar to the significant volumes of beans CÉMOI buys. To put this context, CÉMOI’s annual cocoa bean spend represents 3% of global cocoa bean purchasing. Therefore its announcement is hugely relevant, as supply chain traceability in the industry remains an issue. The majority of chocolate manufacturers buy their beans much further down the supply chain. They might know where a small percentage of certified cocoa has come from, but they do not know where the bulk of their supply comes from. This supply chain opacity is hindering industry transformation. It is leaving farmers to grapple alone with daily economical, environmental and social challenges which prevent them from increasing their production and improving their livelihood.
CÉMOI’s ‘TRANSPARENCE’ programme will be rolled out in three phases:
- TO KNOW. Having a thorough understanding of farmers and how they source their cocoa beans. This phase has already begun and builds on CÉMOI’s existing knowledge of its supply chain.
- TO TRANSFORM cooperatives and farmers’ practices in Ivory Coast through dedicated action plans aligned with CÉMOI’s policy and values.
- TO VERIFY and DISCLOSE the progress made in implementing CEMOI’s policy and measuring its performance through bespoke performance indicators that will be verified by external partners.
TFT Director Bastien Sachet says: “CEMOI’S new commitment is revolutionary for the cocoa sector. Very few companies in the sector can trace 100% of their cocoa bean back to growers. CEMOI is actively developing work in the field rather than passively collecting a raw material. The use of the word ‘transparency’ in its policy is very apt – as transparency is what provides more honest communications with buyers and consumers. It reflects what’s really happening where the cocoa is grown and opens the doors for innovation.”