INDONESIA – Barry Callebaut , one of world’s largest cocoa processors and chocolate manufacturers and Deloitte – one of the big four audit firms – have announced a multi-year partnership to accelerate the support for cocoa farming communities in Indonesia. 

The multi-year strategic collaboration aims to equip Indonesian farmers with skills necessary for improving their cocoa farming ventures into modern, high income ventures.

To this end, the companies plan to deliver educational and skills development programmes to over 30,000 cocoa farmers in Sulawesi and Sumatra.

According to Barry Callebaut, Indonesia is the world’s sixth largest cocoa producer and cocoa plantations in the country are dominated by small-holder farmers.

Under the collaboration, cocoa farmers – of which 20% of these are women – will have access to financial literacy and entrepreneurship trainings that will help them professionalise their small businesses.

They will particularly focus on addressing challenges of low productivity, and as a result, improve the livelihoods of farmers.

Together, the companies will focus on creating better opportunities for youths through education and preserving an interest and appreciation for cocoa farming for the future.

The multi-year partnership is in line with both Barry Callebaut and Deloitte Indonesia’s respective sustainability and social impact initiatives, Forever Chocolate and WorldClass.

“By strengthening our connections with cocoa farmers in collaboration with businesses, communities, and educators, we can enable farmers to access the initiatives they need to improve their agricultural practices and income diversification,” said Claudia Lauw, country leader of Deloitte Indonesia.

Established in 2016, Forever Chocolate is Barry Callebaut’s plan to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025.

It aims to achieve this through innovative projects that will lift cocoa farmers out of poverty, eradicate child labor, create a carbon and forest positive supply chain and ensure 100% sustainable ingredients in all of our products.

Under the Forever Chocolate, Barry Callebaut says that 184,623 cocoa farmers in its supply chain are now out of poverty, measured against the World Bank’s USD 1.90/day threshold for extreme poverty

49,909 cocoa farmers have also been given access to coaching, inputs such as tools and seedlings, or finance and 420 hectares of cocoa replanted under the company’s Forever chocolate initiative.

Richard Fahey, VP for Barry Callebaut Cocoa Asia Pacific, added: “This new collaboration with Deloitte Indonesia will significantly scale our efforts on the ground and enable us to continue to provide pressing support to the cocoa farmers in Indonesia.

I am confident that together with the talented team at Deloitte, we will make an impact on this generation of cocoa farmers and beyond.”

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