Finland's K-Group To Move To 100% Certified Cocoa In Private Label Products
All private label chocolate confectionery, cocoa drinks and chocolate baking products offered by Finland's K-Group will switch to 100% certified cocoa by the end of 2020, the retailer said in a statement.
The group also said that other cocoa-based private label products will be 100% sustainable by the end of 2025.
To achieve cocoa certification, the K-Group said that it has adopted Fairtrade and UTZ certifications as well as the new ISO 34101 standard for responsible and traceable cocoa.
“We see our mission as supporting our customers in making sustainable choices in our stores. Our new cocoa policy further improves the sustainability of our own brand products,” said Matti Kalervo, senior vice president, corporate responsibility at K-Group.
The new ISO 34101 standard sets certain criteria for the productivity of cocoa cultivation, safety in working methods, good working conditions, environmentally friendly farming practices, prevention of child labour and improved traceability.
Almost 70% of the world's cocoa is produced in West Africa, mainly by small family farms while most of the cocoa is consumed in western countries, it states.
Kesko said that third-party certification can ensure that the production methods used for cocoa cultivation are monitored and improved.
"When farmers receive training on more sustainable farming practices, they get a better cocoa harvest and thus a better price for their crops" said Matti Kalervo , senior vice president, corporate responsibility at K-Group.
The group also stated that through certification schemes, farmers are also trained in ways to combat the effects of climate change and improve biodiversity.
It says that climate change is a threat to cocoa cultivation because cocoa trees are poorly resistant to extreme hot temperatures.
The effects of climate change on cocoa cultivation can be countered by planting trees that bring shade to cocoa crops, thus reducing the effects of heat and drought.
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Helen Galgey. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.