The Sustainable Vanilla Initiative has been actively collaborating with the ILO and the US Department of Labor since 2017 to address the concerns raised about child labor in the vanilla industry in Madagascar. Along with individual SVI member supply chain programs, SVI is now directly assisting in the implementation of a program to implement a vanilla code of conduct, raise awareness, strengthen institutions, and improve livelihoods.
On June 12, 2018 SVI through IDH formally signed a contract with the International Labor Organization (ILO) for work that will include supporting the implementation of the exporter code of conduct for child labor, raising awareness and helping to register collectors and curers, and piloting vanilla traceability tools.
Members Henry Todd of Virginia Dare and Hamish Taylor of Symrise, along with SVI Malagasy staff Fafah Vonintsoa and Tania Zaiarivelo represented SVI at the official ceremony in Madagascar.
Exporter Guide for the Code of Conduct on Child Labor
ILO and the US Department of Labor hosted the launch of the SVI-produced Exporters’ Guide to the Code of Conduct on Child Labor on July 10th in Sambava. SVI staff attended the launch and SVI and members believe it will be an effective tool in promoting child protection. Special thanks to the design team at Prova for their fantastic work, to ILO/US DOL for their expected support, and to CRLTE for their collaboration. SVI members are committed to only buying from exporters who have signed the Code of Conduct.
Promoting Professionalization – Collector and Curer Registration
Professionalization in the vanilla supply chain promotes quality, traceability, and the locally developed vanilla Code of Conduct. A key part of professionalization is for collectors (traders) and curers (processors) to officially register with the government. SVI has encouraged the registration process by supporting outreach directly into the vanilla producing communities to increase awareness and ease of registration.
The Collector Registration project with Sava Region finalized its census phase (listing collectors names in the Sava region) with support of radio communication. One-Stop-Shops were set up around the country in 8 communes between 2nd-27th of July. Registration helps to professionalize vanilla exporters and prevent interlopers from taking advantage of market conditions to the detriment of the sector. SVI member companies are committed to the goal of helping exporters become registered, and over time, only buying from those who are.