SINGAPORE – Barry Callebaut, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products and Deloitte, a leading global provider of professional services, jointly announced today a multi-year strategic collaboration to deliver educational and skills development programs to empower over 30,000 cocoa farmers in Sulawesi and Sumatra to permanently lift them out of poverty.
Educational and skills development programs for cocoa farmers
Indonesia is the world’s sixth largest cocoa producer with approximately 220,000 tons a year, most of which comes from Sulawesi. Cocoa plantations in Indonesia are dominated by small-holder farmers on a trajectory towards a living income and beyond. Under this new collaboration, cocoa farmers, about 20% of whom are women, will have access to financial literacy and entrepreneurship trainings to help them find ways to professionalise their small business and enhance their livelihoods.
The farmers will undergo a sales and marketing training conducted by Barry Callebaut’s field facilitators who are key to the successful implementation of Barry Callebaut’s Farm Business Plans. These plans consist of tailor-made services such as tools, individual coaching and agricultural inputs to support and improve yields and farmer income. The Farm Business Plans are designed to support farmers to develop their cocoa farms into rehabilitated, diverse and professionally run farms over a period of several years.
Together, the two companies will also introduce the Deloitte Grow program, which centres on creating better opportunities for youths through education and preserving an interest and appreciation for cocoa farming for the future. Deloitte will also collaborate with Generation Peace, an Indonesian advocacy group, to provide soft skills and critical thinking training for teachers to improve the quality of education in these farming communities and prepare the next generation to embrace Industry 4.0.
“At Deloitte, we are committing our most valued asset – our professionals – to creating opportunities for those left behind. By strengthening our connections with cocoa farmers in collaboration with businesses, communities, and educators, we can enable farmers to access the initiatives they need to improve their agricultural practices and income diversification. Deloitte Indonesia is pleased to partner with Barry Callebaut in making a collective impact to the farming communities by enhancing financial literacy, developing job skills and providing access to opportunities,” said Claudia Lauw, Country Leader of Deloitte Indonesia.
“This new collaboration with Deloitte Indonesia will significantly scale our efforts on the ground and enable us to continue to provide pressing support to the cocoa farmers in Indonesia,” said Richard Fahey, Vice-President for Barry Callebaut Cocoa Asia Pacific. “I am confident that together with the talented team at Deloitte, we will make an impact on this generation of cocoa farmers and beyond.”
Barry Callebaut’s Forever Chocolate meets Deloitte’s WorldClass initiative
Low productivity on cocoa farms as a result of poor agricultural practices, nutrient depleted soils and aging cocoa trees continue to keep cocoa farmers and their families in a cycle of poverty.
To address these challenges head on, Barry Callebaut launched Forever Chocolate in 2016, which plans to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025. It includes 4 concrete, time-bound targets that are addressing the biggest sustainability challenges in the chocolate supply chain. One target is that by 2025, more than 500,000 cocoa farmers will have been lifted out of poverty. Since 2016, Barry Callebaut has welcomed like-minded organizations to come alongside them to build a movement that ensures chocolate will be around forever.
Aligning to Forever Chocolate is Deloitte’s WorldClass initiative which seeks to impact fifty million futures by 2030. Launched in 2017 as Deloitte’s signature global societal impact initiative, WorldClass empowers individuals and communities through education and skills development opportunities and is a reflection of Deloitte’s commitment to investing in people and lifelong learning.