Coop Switzerland And Halba Chocolates Win Swiss Ethics Award
Coop Switzerland has announced that its production company Chocolates Halba has won the Swiss Ethics Award for its commitment to sustainable cocoa farming in Ecuador.
Awarded by companies from the Swiss Excellence Forum, the distinction is given to companies that carry out outstanding projects on an ethical level.
Coop and Halba Chocolates train local Ecuadorian farmers in agroforestry so that they can pass on their knowledge to other farmers. They also encourage them to establish a mixed culture of cocoa, fruits, vegetables and precious essences.
Monoculture of the local cocoa crops is a serious issue in Ecuador, and Coop said that while this increases short-term productivity, it will erode soil fertility and make cocoa trees more susceptible to diseases and pests which will eventually yield cultivation and result in higher costs associated with growing crops.
To counter this, Coop and Halba Chocolates support Arriba cocoa cultivation as part of a dynamic agroforestry. Producers associate their cocoa plants with fruit trees, root vegetables and valuable species, seeking balance and without the use of synthetic fertilisers or chemical pesticides, allowing them to increase and diversify their income.
Some 200,000 cocoa plants and more than 30,000 other trees have already been planted as part of this project.
For Coop, Chocolats Halba transforms Arriba cocoa beans into two kinds of dark chocolate, which meet both the Bio Suisse Bud criteria and the Max Havelaar Fair Trade standards.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Aidan O'Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine