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Cocoa Sourcing – Sustainability Challenges and Emerging Corporate Response

The chocolate industry is confronted with serious sustainability challenges in cocoa production that may put long term cocoa supply at risk. Although sustainability challenges have been a concern for the industry for some years, the challenges have become more complex and increasingly urgent. Hence, it is analysed how chocolate manufacturers started to address the challenges. Additionally, the influence of these emerging corporate responses on global cocoa sourcing and on the sustainability challenges is assessed. The comprehensive review of the emerging corporate responses of six Switzerland-based companies shows that the responses represent similar approaches towards sustainable cocoa sourcing. The assessment of the influence on global cocoa sourcing reveals major effects on the cocoa procurement market. About the effect of the emerging corporate responses on the sustainability challenges in cocoa production no conclusive statement can be made because of the incomplete data basis. Overall, the chocolate companies see themselves as being in transition to sustainable cocoa sourcing.