It’s been a while since we have snacked on new corporate responsibility initiatives from Hershey.
The 120-year-old maker of Reese’s peanut butter cups and Hershey’s Kisses vowed earlier this decade to make its confections with only certified sustainable cocoa by 2020.
With just two years until Hershey’s self-imposed deadline, we asked the company’s senior director of Sustainability, CSR, and Social Innovation, Jeff King, for an update during the Sustainable Brands conference in Vancouver.
“It’s always a challenge when you’re working on cocoa in West Africa,” said King, referencing the challenges in sourcing cocoa without contributing to tropical forest loss, among other complex social and environmental concerns.
Our video interview with King references a pilot project with USAID and Winrock International aimed at tackling land rights issues while educating farmers on sustainable farming methods in Ghana, the world’s second largest producer of cocoa.
Hershey has confirmed 75 percent of cocoa in its supply chain was certified sustainable in 2017 and, in the area of corporate governance, half of its executive committee are women.
Image credit: Hershey