The Beyond Chocolate initiative is happy to welcome ECOM amongst its partners. By signing the partnership, the commodity trading and processing company has officially committed to reaching the Beyond Chocolate goals on living income and ending deforestation. Pam Schreier, Head of Sustainability at ECOM, gives some more information on ECOM’s current sustainability efforts and how they fit into the Beyond Chocolate partnership.
ECOM is committed to conducting its business in an ethical, legal, environmentally and socially responsible manner and is continuously working to improve transparency and traceability of the supply chain. As such, we are pleased to announce our commitment to the targets of the Beyond Chocolate initiative and seek to support our clients and partners in Belgium to achieve their sustainable goals.
For many years, we have supported the farmers in our supply chain to achieve certification and implement programmes that go beyond compliance with these standards.
We recognise that deforestation is one of the biggest causes of global warming and therefore are committed to achieving zero net deforestation in our supply chain. Our origin-based field teams focus on promoting agroforestry systems, intensifying production to avoid the need for further encroachment. We interact at a community level to raise awareness and to promote landscape approaches to avoiding deforestation, partnering with local governments to eliminate farming in protected areas.
We also work with farmers to increase their household incomes through a diversified approach towards rural prosperity as part of our strategic ambition to improve the livelihoods of farmers and their economic opportunities. This drive to improve communities is part of our overall approach to ensuring that there is no modern slavery or human trafficking in our supply chains, and we are active participants in sector-wide efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labour in cocoa production.