Ferrero, the chocolate confectionery leader and producer of Kinders Bueno, Mon Chéri and the famous Nutella, has just announced its intention to implement a complete and sustainable traceability plan for its raw materials by 2020. Ferrero consumes 30% of the global production of hazelnuts, making it the largest hazelnut consumer on the planet.
"The road is almost complete," said Ferrero, adding that they have already achieved 50% of their road map objectives for hazelnuts and 75% for cocoa. "These 2020 targets are realistic for these sectors, because they are based in particular on the example of the sustainable palm oil sector," the group said. In fact, since 2014, 100% of the palm oil used in its products is certified as sustainable.
Widening the scope of responsibility
"We have much responsibility, both societal and environmental," said Jean-Baptiste Santoul, General Manager of Ferrero France, at the 2018 Salon du Chocolat in Paris. "Company confidence (agribusiness, Ed.) has been undermined, and we face new challenges. At Ferrero, we believe in widening the scope of responsibility, from the design of our products to final consumption by our customers, which requires the involvement of all stakeholders."
To secure its supply and support responsible sectors in its supply chain, Ferrero has launched a plan to encourage and train Turkish hazelnut farmers to enable "better access to sustainable agricultural practices". Turkey is the world's largest producer of hazelnut. As for the cocoa sector, "the group has signed a collective commitment with other cocoa and chocolate companies to stop deforestation within the sector, focusing on Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana".
Mars to follow suit in 2020
Ferrero is not the only group to embark on this path. On 4 October, Mars, the largest confectionery manufacturer in the world, announced its intention to become the world's largest buyer of certified cocoa by 2020.
Despite commitments from major companies, cocoa producers remain in a precarious situation, receiving only a 6% share of the $100 billion market. This is especially concerning since global warming makes their job increasingly difficult. By 2050, according to American experts from the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, chocolate could cease to exist.
Mars, whose business model is entirely dependent on chocolate, has therefore committed to reducing its carbon footprint. But "it's not enough," according to the group, which has increasingly turned to more resistant, genetically modified plants.
Marina Fabre @fabre_marina