Ferrero joins with Earthworm non-profit group to deliver Hazelnut Charter on sustainability
Ferrero has partnered with the Earthworm non-profit organisation in a move that will sees the confectionery group release its Hazelnut Charter underlining its commitment to human rights, environmental protection and sustainability principles within its supply chains, reports Neill Barston.
The new framework comes in the wake of the company’s recent collaboration with the International Labour Organisation, as it tackles child labour that has reportedly been found within the wider seasonal hazelnut harvesting market within Turkey.
As the company explained, it established a supplier code to enhance existing measures surrounding transparency of operating, which the business hopes will prove a key driving force to maintain and raise operating standards within the key natural ingredients market, which plays a key role in its portfolio, including Nutella.
According to the business, challenges facing the hazelnut sector are complex, and in some countries deeply rooted. Among the most notable issues is a need to improve working conditions for agricultural workers in order to address social issues, including child labour.
Setting out its sustainability vision for the industry in its charter, the company said that it aims to support an environment where farming communities are thriving, workers and children’s rights are respected, and environmental values are enhanced through regenerative agricultural practices.
Significantly, the company said the charter is applicable across all our hazelnut sourcing with an approach that is based on ensuring compliance with our own policies to which all of our suppliers are expected to adhere, and our belief that we must “Go Beyond” compliance by identifying specific commitments based on selected priorities and initiatives to tackle the complex challenges.
Furthermore the company noted the charter is structured around three pillars founded on a due diligence process which covers all of our suppliers, which includes monitoring of human rights and social practices, with the business affirming it is determined to prevent and eliminate child labour all along its value chain with a multi-stakeholder approach.
Secondly, it is committed to applying the principles of regenerative agriculture on its agrifarms and to supporting the adoption of these principles by the agricultural community across selected territories in our main sourcing countries. Finally, the company confirmed it aims to achieve full traceability to farm level of our sourced hazelnuts.
The business concluded that it will share its progress in publishing an annual action plan, offering updates on the implementation of its charter, which will be underpinned by its sustainability programme, Ferrero Farming Values (FFV) for hazelnuts.
Marco Gonçalves, Ferrero chief procurement & Hazelnut company officer, commented on the development. He said: “Hazelnuts are at the heart of Ferrero. We have been actively engaged towards a sustainable value chain, through our sustainability programme, Ferrero Farming Values, and through collective engagement. The purpose of our new Charter is to build on this work, in our aim to be a driving force behind a hazelnut industry that creates value for all. We will foster transparency by sharing our progress along the way.”
Sharing his enthusiasm for the partnership, Boris Saraber, Director of Operations at Earthworm Foundation, added : “We are pleased to be partnering with Ferrero in its aim to drive lasting change in the hazelnut supply chain. Ferrero acknowledges that a holistic and long-term approach is required to address the challenges. We look forward to working with Ferrero to realise the commitments outlined in its Charter across its hazelnut sourcing.”