Hershey statements re child labour in cocoa production
NGOs have frequently accused Hershey of not taking adequate steps to address allegations of forced child labour in the production of cocoa in its supply chain. Below are some of Hershey's responses:
"Hershey Chocolate Linked to Child Labour", Peter Boaz, IPS News, 17 Sep 2010:
"A spokesperson for Hershey declined to directly address the charges in the report, referring IPS to the company's Corporate Social Responsibility Report.
'We have taken a number of steps as a company and an industry to increase farm-level incomes, build community sustainability and address the troubling issue of child labor in cocoa producing regions,' the report reads.
'As a founding member of the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI) and the WCF's ECHOES (Empowering Cocoa Households with Opportunities and Education Solutions) Alliance, we work with industry peers to address these challenges in a collaborative manner.'"
"Activists protest Hershey in Times Square, calling on chocolate giant to stop using child labor", Tori Ackerman, New York Daily News, 8 Jun 2011:
"When reached for comment, Hershey's spokesman, Kirt Saville, did not address the company's child labor practices, but said it has been committed for the past 50 years to improving the West African cocoa communities.
'We have helped develop more productive agricultural practices, build educational and community resources and eliminate exploitative labor practices,' he said. 'Our focus in on the ground programs that promote sustainable livelihoods in west Africa.'
He added Hershey's has also partnered with several charities to help 200,000 cocoa farmers in the Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon and Liberia."
"Corporate Social Responsibility Report 2009" [PDF], The Hershey Company - scroll to p. 20: "Addressing the Challenges in Sourcing Cocoa"