Case Tony’s Chocolonely

Tony's case

Tony’s Chocolonely (Tony’s) is a Dutch chocolate brand, known for its ambition to make the global chocolate chain 100% slave-free. Since 2012, Tony’s has been buying cocoa beans directly from farmer cooperatives in Ivory Coast and Ghana. Besides sourcing Fairtrade and organic cocoa from Ghana at a premium, Tony’s pays an additional premium to the farmers, so as to enable them to improve their social and environmental costs.

From a strategic perspective, Tony’s Chocolonely was looking for a way to know, show, and improve the environmental and social costs of the cocoa. What is the impact of the premium? Which additional steps could they take to improve living conditions and environmental impacts? And how did Tony’s perform compared to non-sustainable alternatives? In answer to these questions, Tony’s used true pricing to determine the footprint of a pure chocolate bar and monetized externalities such as CO2 emissions, forced labour and income distribution throughout its supply chain. These were compared to a sector benchmark and helped to identify the optimal moment to undertake improvements in line with the company’s strategy.

Results show that Tony’s social and environmental footprint of cocoa was 40% lower than that of the cocoa used in the average non-sustainable chocolate bar in 2013. Also, it was found that 25% of the farmers that receive a premium experience a higher net income and receive more training. Areas of improvement are amongst others underpayment, land use, child and forced labour, health care and capacity-building of farmers. Concerning environmental costs, it was notifiable that around 70% of these are located at farm level, where issues such as land use, productivity and cacao prices can receive more attention.

If all measures succeed, the future is bright: Tony’s aims to eliminate all environmental and social costs in their supply chain by 2019.