Tony’s Chocolonely invites global chocolate makers to its sustainable cocoa supply platform

Dutch-based ethical chocolate brand Tony’s Chocolonely is inviting chocolate makers around the globe to participate in its sustainability-focused cocoa supply chain platform, writes Neill Barston.

As the Amsterdam business explained, its initiative, which was initially launched  aims to use its five Sourcing Principles to tackle illegal child labour and modern slavery by addressing poverty.

The company has been founded on a mission statement of ‘making slave free chocolate the norm,’ and several years ago, formed a strategic partnership with Barry Callebaut for its cocoa sourcing in Ghana and Ivory Coast.

Its sustainable supply platform has now been scaled up in order to include cocoa butter, enabling all types of chocolate to be produced. A plug-and-play set-up now also allows new mission allies to onboard in just a few months and become sustainability front-runners by the next cocoa season in October 2021.

Tony’s Open Chain is designed so that all chocolate-making companies can take responsibility for an open and transparent supply chain, where issues are brought out in the open so they can be solved. The initiative implements an efficient and practical framework for fair sourcing practices following Tony’s 5 Sourcing Principles: using 100% traceable cocoa beans, paying a higher price, strengthening farmer cooperatives, engaging in long-term direct trading partnerships, and focusing on cocoa quality and productivity to optimise cocoa yields.

As Paul Schoenmaker (main image), Head of Impact at Tony’s Chocolonely explains: “Since the launch of Tony’s Open Chain in 2019, we’ve figured out exactly how to turn our great ideas for sparking change in the chocolate industry into an even greater reality. Now, we’ve made it as easy as possible for all chocolate brands to join Tony’s Open Chain and assume responsibility for human rights and sustainability issues such as deforestation in their cocoa supply chain. Everything we build in Tony’s Open Chain focuses on making it scalable and replicable, while keeping the model credible. Only together we’ll make chocolate 100% slave-free.”

As part of paving the way for new partners, Tony’s has expanded the initiative to also include 100% traceable cocoa butter, the key ingredient in white chocolate. This latest addition means that Tony’s Open Chain is now available for all types of chocolate.

Furthermore, sourcing cocoa butter through Tony’s Open Chain means that the bean volume demand has almost tripled in 2020/2021, creating an immediate positive impact with cocoa farmers: more beans means more impact. As a result, the platform’s first mission ally, leading Dutch supermarket chain Albert Heijn, has now completed the goal of transforming its entire Delicata range supply chain.

Following these milestones, Tony’s Open Chain is ready for more global mission allies to join, and new partners will be announced in the early months of 2021, more information on the initiative is available at www.tonysopenchain.com

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