SWITZERLAND – Nestle has introduced the first KitKat made with cocoa mass sourced from beans grown by farmer families enrolled in the company’s income accelerator program. 

The initiative aims to not only enhance the transparency of Nestle’s cocoa supply chain but also uplift the livelihoods of cocoa-farming families, promote responsible agricultural practices, and reduce the risk of child labor. 

Launched in January 2022, the income accelerator program focuses on closing the living income gap for cocoa-farming families while advancing better agriculture practices and gender equality.  

The program incentivizes families to enroll their children in school, implement good agricultural practices, engage in agroforestry activities, and diversify their incomes.  

Nestle’s initiative has already positively impacted over 10,000 families in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa, with plans to expand to Ghana this year, benefiting a total of 30,000 families. The ultimate goal is to reach around 160,000 cocoa-farming families within Nestle’s global cocoa supply chain by 2030. 

Nestle is committed to achieving full traceability and physical segregation of cocoa sourced from its income accelerator program, collaborating with various partners and suppliers. 

Corinne Gabler, head of confectionery and ice cream for Nestlé, emphasizes the importance of this initiative, stating, “Today, this innovation is brought to life through the Breaks for Good initiative that puts cocoa farmers at the centre of our product through our income accelerator programme.  

We couldn’t think of a better brand than KitKat to represent our efforts to create a meaningful impact in cocoa communities.” 

The cocoa mass from the income accelerator program adheres to high traceability standards, ensuring ‘mixed identity preserved’ traceability, allowing cocoa to be traced and stored separately.  

Furthermore, Nestle plans to use segregated cocoa butter for all of its KitKat chocolate in Europe by mid-2024, with plans for expansion to other regions in the coming years. 

Thierry Touchais, manager of strategic accounts for the Rainforest Alliance, commended Nestle’s commitment to sustainability, stating, “It’s encouraging to find a company of this scale using a ‘mixed identity preserved’ model in which cocoa can be traced back to Rainforest Alliance-certified farmers engaged in Nestlé’s income accelerator. The approach showcases the potential for positive change in the industry.” 

The KitKat Breaks for Good will be available on store shelves in 27 European countries starting from January 2024, with the UK launch scheduled for May 2024.  

To further underscore their commitment to sustainability, Nestle has also introduced a limited-edition KitKat with 70% dark chocolate, sourced from the income accelerator, in the UK market as a pilot project. 

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