Nestle U.K. to Produce More KitKat Bars Under Fairtrade Label

Nestle SA (NESN) in the U.K. and Ireland will make two-finger KitKat chocolate bars next year from cocoa certified by Fairtrade, doubling the quantity of sweets it makes there with certification for sustainably-grown ingredients.

The unit will make an additional 800 million bars of KitKat a year using cocoa grown in the Ivory Coast that carries certification, starting in January, the Vevey, Switzerland-based company said today in an e-mailed statement. Nestle began using Fairtrade cocoa in its four-finger KitKat in the U.K. and Ireland in 2010.

The unit will buy an extra 5,300 tons of cocoa from Fairtrade cooperatives as a result of the extension. Under the program, nine more cooperatives in the Ivory Coast will be paid an amount to cover the cost of sustainable production, as well as a premium to invest in community projects, according to the statement. Nestle buys about a 10th of the global cocoa production and more than a third of that comes from the Ivory Coast, the world’s biggest producer.

A Fair Labor Association study requested by Nestle found this year that the world’s biggest food company needs to step up measures to combat child labor in the Ivory Coast cocoa industry. About one fifth of the cocoa the chocolate maker gets from that country can be traced because it comes from Nestle’s sustainable-farming program, while the rest comes from the “standard” supply chain, which isn’t transparent, the report found.

To contact the reporters on this story: Dermot Doherty in Geneva at ddoherty9@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Celeste Perri at cperri@bloomberg.net

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