Response to Hershey’s Rainforest Alliance Certified Bliss Announcement
January 30, 2012
On January 30th, The Hershey Company announced that it would make a commitment to purchasing Rainforest Alliance Certified cocoa for all of its Bliss Chocolate products, starting later this year.
This commitment is a welcome first step for Hershey to improve its supply chain accountability. This is the first commitment that Hershey has made to using an independent, third -party certification system to ensure that its cocoa is grown sustainably, including the monitoring of forced and child labor.
This commitment also demonstrates that The Hershey Company acknowledges the severity of the labor abuses that taint the West African cocoa sector, from where Hershey sources the majority of its cocoa.
Hershey made its announcement less than one week after we announced that an ad would run during the Super Bowl that would highlight the company’s use of child slavery in cocoa production. This ad, coupled with sustained, consistent consumer-based advocacy towards Hershey, contributed to Hershey’s announcement today. Because of Hershey’s commitment we have decided not to run the ad, however, we will continue to press Hershey for greater commitments to end child labor throughout its supply chain.
The members of the Raise the Bar, Hershey! Campaign congratulate Hershey on this first step to achieve greater supply chain accountability and hope that it will be the beginning of comprehensive supply chain traceability and certified child-labor free Hershey chocolate products.
Read Hershey’s statement here: http://www.thehersheycompany.com/newsroom/news-release.aspx?id=1653877
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INTERNATIONAL LABOR RIGHTS FORUM is an advocacy organization dedicated to achieving just and humane treatment for workers worldwide. For more information, go to www.LaborRights.org.