On the 16th of March, Mars was one of twelve of the world’s largest chocolate and cocoa companies who came together to launch their collective statement of intent to work together to end deforestation and forest degradation in their cocoa supply chains. The statement was made at an event organised by HRH the Prince of Wales’ International Sustainability Unit (I.S.U), the World Cocoa Foundation (W.C.F) and The Sustainable Trade Initiative (I.D.H).
Mars, along with other confectionery companies and cocoa traders, agreed to co-operate in ongoing efforts to end deforestation in key cocoa-growing areas with an initial focus on Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana where the majority of the world’s cocoa is grown. We’ve set a target of November to form a plan to prevent cocoa growers from damaging tropical forests.
We’ll be working with governments from several countries including those of Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Norway and the UK to establish a plan that will be presented to the UN climate change conference in November.
HRH the Prince of Wales, who has been an ambassador for global efforts to protect and preserve the environment and spoke at the event, made it clear that “the results of deforestation would undermine the very resilience of the cocoa sector itself, and with it, the livelihoods of the millions of smallholders who depend on it.”
At Mars, Responsibility is one of our Five Principles, which is why this campaign is so important to us. Our Chief Sustainability Officer and Chairman of the World Cocoa Foundation, Barry Parkin, said that the event “marks a crucial step forward because 12 leading World Cocoa Foundation member companies have agreed to work together and, in partnership with others, to tackle the challenge of deforestation in cocoa. We look forward to more companies joining the effort and are grateful for the leadership provided by The Prince of Wales in convening the landmark event."