Nestlé has today reported progress in its determination to end deforestation in its cocoa supply chain and ensure regenerative supply chains for forests and communities. It is aligned with its commitment to source 100% of its cocoa sustainably under the Nestlé Cocoa Plan by 2025.
Deforestation remains one of the pressing issues facing the cocoa sector, especially in West Africa. In 2017, Nestlé joined the public-private Cocoa & Forests Initiative to help end deforestation and restore forests in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. In March 2019, the company published a detailed action plan to support these collective efforts.
Over the past three years, Nestlé has been working with the governments of Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, its suppliers, its partners and the cocoa farming communities to scale up its actions. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, which inevitably impacted certain activities such as mapping the farmers’ lands, farmers’ training, and cookstoves distribution, Nestlé made good progress last year.
Nestlé’s achievements include so far:
- Mapping 85% of the farm boundaries of the 110 000 Nestlé Cocoa Plan farmers in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire;
- Distribution of over 1 250 000 native forest and local fruit trees in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana to make farms more climate-resilient and to diversify farmers’ incomes;
- Distribution of over 2 million high-yielding cocoa trees in Ghana to restore cocoa-growing farms and boost productivity;
- Helping more than 10 000 people benefiting from financial support through village saving loan associations in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana;
- Distributing 1 075 more efficient and less polluting cookstoves to reduce pressure on forests and help improve family health in Côte d’Ivoire;
- Engaging over 4 900 individuals in income-generating projects in Côte d’Ivoire in 2020;
- Training and sensitization of over 10 000 farmers on the importance of protecting forest and agricultural best practices in 2020.
Nestlé recognizes that for a lasting and meaningful impact, in addition to addressing deforestation linked to cocoa, it needs to conserve and restore forests actively while promoting sustainable livelihoods and respecting human rights.
Last year, Nestlé partnered with the Ministry of Water and Forests of Côte d’Ivoire to restore the Cavally Forest reserve, a biodiversity hotspot under threat due to deforestation and enhance the resilience and livelihoods of local communities. Nestlé has kicked off the community consultations with 1 600 people in 66 cocoa villages. It is an important step to foster inclusiveness and ensure success. It will also take an active role in tracking the forest’s carbon stock to evaluate the influence of activities toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
All these initiatives contribute to Nestlé’s Climate roadmap to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 at the latest. As part of this work, the company is deploying nature-based solutions, like forest conservation and restoration, to absorb more carbon, improve soil health, and enhance biodiversity.
Nestlé will continue to work with all stakeholders to help protect and restore forests, promote sustainable cocoa production and thriving communities, and create a forest positive future for all.