Person holding cocoa fruit

Cocoa

Our Approach

Cocoa is grown by smallholder farmers who may face difficult working and living conditions. The cocoa used in our products comes mainly from Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. Human rights violations including child labour, as well as environmental risks such as deforestation, are key challenges when sourcing cocoa.

The ALDI SOUTH Group is committed to fostering fair working conditions and environmentally friendly production in the cultivation of cocoa. In order to tackle these challenges, ALDI SOUTH continues to increase the amount of certified sustainably sourced cocoa in its range. In addition, we collaborate with other stakeholders on projects on the ground and are working with our business partners to increase traceability of our cocoa.

Our Actions

Certification

We want to provide our customers the highest quality at the best possible price. Certification schemes are one way to determine whether sustainability standards are adhered to in the cultivation of the cocoa used in our products. We require the sustainability standards UTZ/Rainforest Alliance, Fairtrade or organic when buying products containing cocoa and we have already converted the majority of the cocoa used in our private label products. The ALDI SOUTH Group additionally engages with certification organisations to strengthen requirements and improve sustainability standards at farm level.

Human Rights Risk Assessment

Human Rights SchemaIn 2018, we comprehensively examined the human rights risks within our food and agriculture supply chains. The aim of these assessments is to identify any adverse impacts our company may have on human rights, gain insights into our actual impacts and understand where our greatest level of influence is throughout the global supply chains of the entire ALDI SOUTH Group.

We identified cocoa as a raw material with a high risk of human rights violations and consider it to be important to us in terms of leverage.

Our Goal & Performance (2019)

Our Goal: All cocoa used in relevant own-brand products will be from certified sources by the end of 2020.

88%

of products containing certified cocoa

Our Projects, Memberships & Working Groups

Choco Changer Flavours
Mission Ally of Tony’s Open Chain
New chocolate bar: Choceur CHOCO CHANGER

A sweet taste, a delicious smell and a little bit(e) of happiness: We are excited to launch our new, responsibly sourced chocolate bar: Choceur Choco Changer. Our customers’ choice is empowering cocoa farmers in West Africa. Together, we can amplify our positive impact on cocoa farmers and change the norm in the cocoa industry by working on ending poverty, illegal child labour, and deforestation.

As the first international discount retailer to join Tony’s Open Chain in December 2020, ALDI is committed to support Tony’s Open Chain’s ambitious mission to change the norm in the cocoa industry by improving the working conditions along the supply chains and by collaborating in the transparent sourcing of cocoa beans. The cocoa beans for the Choceur CHOCO CHANGER are sourced via Tony’s Open Chain and its 5 Sourcing Principles.

More on 'Choceur Choco Changer'
Tony's Open Chain Logo
Since 2020
Mission Ally of Tony’s Open Chain

As the first discount retailer, ALDI has joined Tony’s Open Chain. Tony’s Open Chain is an initiative by Tony’s Chocolonely, where they invite other chocolate brands to join Tony’s Open Chain and work together to change the norm in chocolate. By adopting the 5 Sourcing Principles for our new chocolate bar, ALDI has joined the mission to make chocolate 100% slave-free.

More on 'Tony's Open Chain'
People holding cocoa fruits on the ground
© Forum Nachhaltiger Kakao
Project in Côte d'Ivoire
PRO-PLANTEURS project

Since 2015, as a member of the German Initiative on Sustainable Cocoa (GISCO) we have worked in partnership with the German government and the government of Côte d'Ivoire in a joint project. PRO-PLANTEURS works together with 25,000 cocoa farmers, including female farmers, their families, and their cooperatives. Successes of the first project phase were

  • Professionalisation of cooperatives
  • Increase in farmers’ cocoa yields
  • Farmer training in Good Agricultural Practices and professional business management
  • Diversification of agricultural production and nutrition.

In the PRO-PLANTEURS project, women are specifically trained on good nutrition and the cultivation of food crops for their own use. This allows women to be  more financially independent by selling and consuming the harvest of food crops.

In June 2020, PRO-PLANTEURS started its second project phase with a focus on contributing to better living and working conditions of about 30,000 cocoa farmers.

© Forum Nachhaltiger Kakao
More on 'German Initiative on Sustainable Cocoa (GISCO)'
GISCO
Logo of GISCO
Since 2015
German Initiative on Sustainable Cocoa (GISCO)

ALDI has been an active member of the German Initiative on Sustainable Cocoa (GISCO) since 2015 and works with other members to achieve the initiative’s objectives. This multi-stakeholder initiative aims to improve the livelihood of cocoa farmers and their families, to contribute to a secure living, to conserve and protect natural resources and biodiversity in cocoa producing countries, as well as to increase cultivation and commercialisation of sustainably produced cocoa.

Working together

ALDI is actively engaged in the sustainability and PRO-PLANTEURS working groups, which focus on the implementation of GISCO’s goals and monitoring the PRO-PLANTEURS project.

More information
African woman looking at camera
Copyright: Fairtrade Germany
Project in Côte d'Ivoire
Fairtrade cocoa project

Since 2020, the ALDI SOUTH Group and Fairtrade  have been collaborating on a project in Côte d’Ivoire to improve working conditions and livelihoods for local cocoa farmers. The project analyses the impact of ALDI’s business operations on the community and environment, increases traceability of our cocoa products and provides a basis for further projects together with Fairtrade. As part of the project, ALDI’s business partner will source cocoa beans which are 100% traceable from the selected cooperative for our cocoa-based products.

More on 'Fairtade'
Hands holding cocoa fruit in close up
© Barry Callebaut
Project in Ghana
Closing the living income gap for cocoa farmers
© Barry Callebaut

 

In 2020, the ALDI SOUTH Group has joined forces with the chocolate producer Barry Callebaut and the Cocoa Horizons Foundation to support Ghanaian cocoa farmers to generate alternative income sources to cocoa. The two-year project is co-funded by the Belgian initiative ‘Beyond Chocolate’, which is funded by the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and coordinated by IDH, the Sustainable Trade Initiative.

The project is intended to support achieving the living income target of ‘Beyond Chocolate’. The following activities are included in the project:

  • Approximately 80 households will benefit from the rejuvenation of 40 hectares of old cocoa farms.
  • 77 ‘Village Saving and Loans Associations (VSLAs)’ will be formed empowering women and young people to invest in enterprises and households.
  • Approximately 1,000 farmers will be provided with official land titles to secure ownership and allow long-term investments on farms.
  • Between 400 - 500 households will be supported in setting up alternative income sources via poultry farming and energy efficient cook stoves.

The project will be implemented by the Cocoa Horizons Foundation, an independent, non-profit and transparent organization with the vision to drive cocoa farmer prosperity by creating self-sustaining communities that protect nature and children. ALDI will source the Horizons cocoa beans from Barry Callebaut and use them in a chocolate product that can be enjoyed by ALDI customers.

RCC
Logo of RCC
Since 2019
Retailer Cocoa Collaboration (RCC)

In September 2019, the ALDI SOUTH Group joined the newly formed Retailer Cocoa Collaboration (RCC), which commits to support the Cocoa and Forests Initiative. This initiative will drive change by protecting and restoring forests in Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Colombia. The RCC will also map collective cocoa supply chains to gain a greater understanding of the social and environmental risks found in production countries. The trader assessment conducted by RCC will also provide us with greater transparency and insight into lower supply chain tiers.

More information

Sustainable Development Goals

1 No poverty 2 Zero hunger 8 Decent work and economic growth 10 Reduced inequalities 12 Responsible consumption and production 13 Climate action 15 Life on land 17 Partnerships for the goals

UNGC

Human Rights

Principle 1

Support and respect the protection of human rights

Principle 2

Not complicit in human rights abuses

Labour

Principle 3

Uphold freedom of association and recognition of right to collective bargaining

Principle 4

Elimination of forced and compulsory labour

Principle 5

Abolition of child labour

Principle 6

Elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation

Environment

Principle 7

Precautionary approach to environmental challenges

Principle 8

Promote environmental responsibility

GRI references

GRI 103: Management approach 2016

Global Reporting Initiative 103-1 Global Reporting Initiative 103-2 Global Reporting Initiative 103-3