The Hershey Company has sponsored the National Chocolate & Cocoa Day celebrations, which were held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, from 30 September – 2 October, 2022. The annual event was organised by the Conseil du Café-Cacao, the country’s regulatory authority for coffee and cocoa.
The event is there to honour the country’s cocoa farmers, raise awareness about the sector and the important role it plays in its economy, as well as showcase opportunities for local processing of cocoa particularly through the making of artisanal chocolate.
“Our partnerships in Côte d’Ivoire are some of the most pivotal in our global supply chain,” explained Tricia Brannigan, Vice President, Chief Procurement Officer at The Hershey Company. “I’ve had the opportunity this week to meet with government leaders, our supply partners as well as development experts and cocoa-farming families in their communities. I couldn’t be prouder of the collaboration across these stakeholders, culminating in today’s event celebrating the cocoa sector and Côte d’Ivoire’s talented artisanal chocolatiers.”
Hershey’s sponsoring and presence at the event marks the end of a week-long trip by Hershey executives who met with partners, cocoa farmers and government leaders. On 29 September, the company donated more than a million servings of a children’s nutritional supplement to the Children of Africa Foundation.
“Multi-stakeholder collaboration is the key to continued progress in cocoa,” said Leigh Horner, Vice President of Global Sustainability at The Hershey Company. “In partnership with Côte d’Ivoire’s leadership, NGOs, peers in the cocoa sector and cocoa-growing communities, we aim to create long-lasting impact and mutual success.”
The company runs its own initiative, Cocoa For Good, part of which is its pledge to invest US$500 million in these communities by 2030. It’s also there to address social and environmental challenges facing cocoa communities currently. Cocoa For Good programs and partnerships help to keep children in school, the company says, as well as increase incomes, provide farmers with the support they need, and protect forests.
On 30 September, Hershey showed its support for raising awareness about forest conservation by donating to the visitor centres at Banco National Park in Abidjan. This event marked a new partnership between Hershey and Office of Ivorian Parks and Reserves (OIPR).
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