We want to make a difference. For that reason, we think it is important to structurally contribute to a better life for the cocoa farmers with whom we collaborate. As long as child labor and modern slavery in the cocoa industry still exist, there is no reason to be 100% happy about chocolate. Since 2010 all Delicata chocolate letters and chocolate bars of Albert Heijn have been the first to be UTZ certified. UTZ certified farmers use better agricultural methods, with respect for people and nature. By participating in Tony's Open Chain, we are taking an important next step towards achieving a transparent and sustainable cocoa chain. As the first chocolate brand, we are going to buy cocoa according to the 5 principles of Tony's Open Chain:
Extreme poverty is one of the main causes of social abuses in the cocoa industry. One way to reduce the problems is to pay a livable income for the cocoa farmers with whom we collaborate. This becomes possible by applying the five sourcing principles of Tony’s Chocolonely. Also, anonymity is no longer part of the production chain. Tony's Open Chain offers more knowledge, transparency and tools. Such as Tony's Beantracker or the "Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System" that has been entered at all of Tony's Chocolonely's partner cooperatives. This determines who grows the cocoa beans and under which circumstances this takes place. Possible abuses can therefore be better addressed.
Albert Heijn hopes that different retailers and brands will follow, so we can actually say "Together we make chocolate 100% slave free". The intention of this initiative is to increase the positive movement. The more producers and brands will follow, the better.
Globally, still a lot of child labor in the cocoa industry exist and this problem is even growing. According to the latest figures, 2.1 million children work in the cocoa sector in West Africa. That is 100,000 more than four years ago. Manufacturer Barry Callebaut has set itself the goal to operate fully sustainable in 2025. As Albert Heijn we also want to contribute to this change.
Delicata wants to make as many people happy with chocolate. This applies to all chocolate lovers, but also to the cocoa farmers with whom we collaborate. By working in the long term and through the five principles of Tony's Open Chain, we provide a livable income for the cocoa farmers. By doing this we can actually say: "Chocolate Happiness for All"
As a major retail buyer of cocoa, Albert Heijn has an important role to exercise responsibility over our chains. By participating in Tony's Open Chain and expanding into a new cooperative of cocoa farmers, we can increase the positive impact of better working conditions and higher wages for cocoa farmers in Africa.
As a retailer with a lot of influence on the daily life of the customer, it’s important that we take our responsibility. By cooperating with Tony's Chocolonely, we contribute to a positive development of the sector.
As an enabler, Barry Callebaut increases the playing field in which Tony’s 5 Sourcing Principles can work. They have put the infrastructure in place for other companies to join this open chain.
Barry Callebaut believes Tony's Open Chain is a great movement and fully supports the Tony’s Open Chain mindset, because only together we can have real impact on the livelihood of the cocoa farmers.
In 2017, Barry Callebaut announced its "Forever Chocolate" program with the ambition to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025. Read more on Barry Callebaut’s efforts and program for improvements in sustainable chocolate.