The chocolate and cocoa business said it has enjoyed “growing traction” with smallholder farmers over the past three years through collaborations with industry customers and development agencies such as Swisscontact.
The company has more than 500 employees in Indonesia, the world’s third largest cocoa bean grower, and operates two cocoa factories, with one chocolate and compound factory due to open later this year.
“Barry Callebaut champions the development of sustainable cocoa farming and, more broadly, a fully sustainable chocolate value chain,” said Nicko Debenham, Barry Callebaut vice president for global cocoa sustainability.
“We have a long-standing commitment in Indonesia and are excited to take an increasing role to help shape a sustainable chocolate and cocoa future in this important cocoa producing country.”
The company said educating farmers on pruning, grafting, and replanting, as well as teaching proper pest control and disease management, was helping increase crop productivity.
The expansion of the sustainability program will:
- Increase the number of Indonesian farmers trained in good agricultural practice from 20,000 to 50,000 by 2020
- More than double the field staff implementing projects on the ground – from 70 to around 150 within the next 18 months
- Increase number of nurseries to help replace aging cocoa trees, from the existing 25 nurseries with a capacity of 130,000, to 50 nurseries by 2018 that will grow up to one million seedlings a year
- In the next two years, double the premium payments for cocoa farmers who deliver certified cocoa. Farmer premiums totalling almost $1m have been handed out in Indonesia over the past three years
- Extend sustainability activities beyond Sulawesi to Sumatra and Bali by building more teaching facilities that comprise a clone garden, a farming area for cocoa seedlings and a teaching space.
“Processing cocoa beans in origin countries such as Indonesia generates local employment and makes our supply chain more efficient,” said Edmund Ee, Barry Callebaut president cocoa Asia Pacific, adding the company still had “a long way to make our business and value chain fully sustainable.”
“It’s important for us to take all necessary actions so that in the near future, we are able to source 100% sustainable cocoa for our production in Indonesia.”