Cocoa is an important crop, supporting the livelihoods of more than five million family farms in countries like Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Indonesia and Brazil. The industry faces significant sustainable development challenges, including extreme poverty and widely-reported incidences of child labour and human trafficking. Although Target is not a large user of cocoa, we do sell some chocolate products. Given our very limited visibility and control of conditions on farms, this present a risk for our business.
In early 2017, Target launched a project to develop a sustainable cocoa and chocolate policy. In March 2017, we announced to our suppliers that all cocoa ingredients used in Target brand chocolate products must be sourced through one of our preferred sustainable cocoa standards, Rainforest Alliance or Cocoa Horizons (Barry Callebault), by July 2019. These standards aim to encourage continuous improvement in cocoa farming practices – such as water efficiency and respect for workers’ rights - by applying best practice methods, training, independent monitoring and assurance.
This commitment has now been achieved and all Target own brand products with cocoa are now sourced in accordance with our sustainable cocoa policy.