Fairtrade certification for two-finger Kit Kat bars will double Nestlé UK & Ireland’s commitment to the ethical sourcing brand from January 2013.
After winning certification for four-finger Kit Kat in January 2010, the confectionery giant will now manufacture an extra 800M bars a year packaged with the Fairtrade logo.
The firm will buy an extra 5,300t of sustainable cocoa from Fairtrade farmer co-operatives in the Ivory Coast, West Africa.
Ciaran Sullivan, md of Nestlé Confectionery UK & Ireland, said: “Today’s news is the next step on our journey toward a sustainable supply of quality cocoa and our commitment to certify all our Kit Kats in the UK & Ireland. From January 2013, over 1.2bn Kit Kats will now carry the mark on two and four finger Kit Kat, supporting in total over 7,000 farmers.”
‘Badly need our support’
Sullivan said farmers in the Nestlé Cocoa Plan receive benefits such as: new plantlets, farmer training and new schools for their communities. “Ivorian farmers badly need our support and this move will help even more cocoa farmers and their families build a positive long-term future,” he said.
Supplies of Fairtrade cocoa were boosted by nine additional farmer co-operatives in the Ivory Coast agreeing to sell their production to Nestlé.
The 4,500 new Fairtrade farmers will receive a price that covers the costs of sustainable production plus a premium to invest in their community or business development projects of their choice, such as improving healthcare and schools, said the firm.
Mike Gidney, interim executive director of the Fairtrade Foundation, said: “This is sweet news not only for the farmers and communities but also for consumers. We know how much Kit Kat 4-Finger going Fairtrade has been able to transform communities in the Ivory Coast.”
The Fairtrade certified co-operative Kavokiva has used premium payments to develop a variety of community projects including health insurance for all members and their families, he added.
Ivorian farmer Kouame Fasseri – who has appeared on the back of the Fairtrade 4-Finger Kit Kat since their launch – said: “When you buy Fairtrade, it is small farmers like me who benefit. The premiums not only provide additional cash for all members but it pays for our health insurance, a decision we took together.”
“Nestlé has been a very good partner to us, and helped us through Fairtrade and invested in providing new cocoa trees for us. Many of our trees were old and are expensive to replace.”