Getting to the root of the problem
Transparence Cacao relies on collaboration with local farmers and suppliers for its projects. The production process of chocolate should be sustainable and comprehensible from beginning to end. One example of a key focus point in the sustainability initiative is the issue of deforestation: The forest surface area in Ivory Coast has dropped from 16 million hectares in 1960 to 3.4 million hectares in 2015. One reason for this decrease is deforestation to make room for new cocoa plantations.
Therefore, CÉMOI started a reforestation programme of previously cleared areas in 2016. Since then, the company has planted 600,000 new trees. ‘That means we’re well on the way to reaching our goal of planting 1.5 million trees total’, says Diomandé. However, to literally get to the root of the problem, pure reforestation is not enough, he says. It is more important to empower the local people and to use existing plantations more efficiently instead of cutting down trees in new areas.