Sustainable Cocoa Butter

Cargill

1. No Poverty 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth 13. Climate Action 15. Life on Land 17. Partnerships for the Goals

Overview

The Cocoa Promise achieves just more than one goal. The UN SDG goals it encompasses are goals: 1,2, 5, 8, 13, 15, and 17. This promise started in 2012 and has been going on ever since. This promise benefits the business more than it makes money because Cargill spends a lot of their time teaching and helping the farmers to make better and more cocoa in a more sustainable way, all of which cost time and money for the company but creates a cleaner and easier to track product.

They have a commitment to accelerate progress toward a transparent global cocoa supply chain, to enable cocoa farmers and their communities to achieve better incomes, and living standards sustainably and to deliver a sustainable supply of cocoa and chocolate products, so this is not just for show or a philanthropy event. This idea is scalable for any company that follows the promise. They are going just connect every dot for maximum transparency and use cutting-edge digital technologies whenever possible. They also use a holistic look at the sustainability of cocoa. The programs that Cargill use are adaptable.

Authors

Raihaanah Safee

Raihaanah Safee

Emma Allen

Emma Allen

Olivia Boysel

Olivia Boysel

School

The University of Toledo

The University of Toledo

Professor

Gary Insch

Gary Insch

Innovation

One of Cargill’s innovations is sustainably grown cocoa butter. It is used in cosmetic products, such as hand cream, skin and hair oil, and lipstick care. The sustainable cocoa butter is certified by the Rainforest Alliance, and it is sourced from Ghana, Cameroon, and Côte d’Ivoire. The cocoa is biodegradable and 100% natural, according to ISO 16128. The Cargill Cocoa Promise emerged in 2012, with knowledge from 10 years of being in the field with farmers and farmer organizations. The promise, along with the UN sustainability goals, influenced Cargill’s sustainability goals, which were introduced in 2017.

According to Cargill’s website, “The Cargill Cocoa Promise is our commitment to farmers and their communities, enabling them to achieve better incomes and living standards while growing cocoa sustainably.” A part of the Cocoa Promise is to make sure the cocoa producers are working under safe conditions and in a responsible way. To make sure working conditions are good, Marty Muenzmaier, Sustainability & External Affairs Lead Cargill Bioindustrial Group, said Cargill has a large and extensive program where there are “40-50 people who mostly work with cocoa producers...” This program is the biggest sustainability program people-wise and one of the oldest at Cargill.

Sustainable Cocoa Butter

Inspiration

The origin of Coca Promise is that the worldwide demand for cocoa is growing and unlike other major crops used in the global food supply, cocoa is still mostly produced on small farms. Many of these farms struggle with aging, unproductive trees, and limited access to modern harvesting techniques, financial resources, and marketing practices. Also, cocoa farming has not seen a significant increase in productivity in the last few decades, and yet the increase in cocoa consumption has grown. Consumer desire for sustainably sourced cocoa is also increasing so this is putting pressure on manufacturers to be transparent about how their products are produced.

“Our ambition is to accelerate progress toward a supply chain that is transparent, enables farmers to achieve better incomes and living standards, and delivers a sustainable supply of cocoa and chocolate products.” (1, Jos de Loor, President, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate)

This pledge is aimed at improving the livelihoods of farmers, their families, and their communities, and securing a long-term, responsible supply of sustainable cocoa. With this promise, an increase in farmers with the knowledge, skills, and support they need to increase the productivity and profitability of their farms in a responsible and sustainable way. Farmers are taught best practices and are certified in cocoa farming and management skills that have become tools for meaningful change in the regeneration of old farms into productive farms.

“We do not have a choice, we have owners, we have a board of directors, we have corporate leadership that expects us to do business in a way that is more and more sustainable” (Marty Muenzmaier, Sustainability & External Affairs Lead Cargill Bioindustrial Group).

Overall impact

Cargill’s sustainable innovations are replicable and they enhance the quality of the business. Cargill uses sustainably grown and biodegradable products to increase a positive effect on the environment. The products also have a positive impact on consumers and the quality of working conditions for farmers. With their sustainable initiatives, Cargill is helping the planet, customers, farmers, rural feedstocks, consumers, and their business.

Business benefit

Cargill’s sustainable innovations are replicable, meaning other companies can use their sustainability approaches for their own company. Cargill’s sustainable products help grow profit from people who care about the environment. Marty Muenzmaier said that cocoa is provided in a way that is responsible and is a “challenging commodity for us to purchase...” Cargill spends quite a bit on making their company more sustainable, but it helps them and the environment out in the long run. Cargill also has promises in place that help improve the quality of the business. In the future, Cargill plans on making a new promise that involves making Cargill more inclusive and diverse, as well as minimizing irrigation water use when making their products.

Social and environmental benefit

Cargill has good short-term and long-term impacts on the environment and society. Consumer benefits include having good quality products, contributing to a better impact on the environment, as well as relieving dry skin. Using cocoa butter has a positive impact on the environment because it is sustainably grown and biodegradable. Cargill also works closely with cocoa farmers and makes sure child and forced labor is not used when farming. This makes production ethical and good for society and farmers.

Interview

Marty Muenzmaier, Sustainability & External Affairs Lead Cargill Bioindustrial Group

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Cargill

Cargill

Wayazata, MN, Worldwide

Business Website: https://www.cargill.com/

Year Founded: 1865

Number of Employees: 5001 to 10000

Cargill provides insight to partners through market expertise data. They transform raw materials into finished products, and they move products around the world. They are a large producer of cocoa beans and from the bean, Cargill Beauty processes and supplies White Cocoa Butter to the personal care industry.