Amsterdam, 25 January 2021 – Tony’s Chocolonely launches a limited edition of 4 ‘look-alike’ chocolate bars to raise awareness for the fact that 20 years after the industry promised to eradicate illegal child labor, it is still widely prevalent. Companies are not legally obliged to do their due diligence to trace violations of human rights in their supply chains, let alone solve them. Which is why Tony’s calls on all chocolate fans to be part of the ‘Sweet Solution’ and sign its petition to support the need for humanS rights legislation that holds companies legally accountable for modern slavery and illegal child labor in their supply chains.
Tony’s Chocolonely offers a ‘Sweet Solution’ to chocolate’s bitter truth: The Sweet Solution bars, which are made according to Tony's 5 Sourcing Principles, come just months after the damning US government-sponsored NORC report on the chocolate industry’s failure to address millions of shocking human rights violations in Ghana and Ivory Coast. In 2001 the world’s biggest chocolate companies supported the Harkin–Engel Protocol, committing to eradicate illegal child labor and modern slavery from the chocolate supply chain. Since then, not much has changed. Today, over 1,56 million children and at least 30,000 victims of modern slavery are forced to work on cocoa plantations. Voluntary measures have failed, and self-regulation is clearly not enough.
Paul Schoenmakers, Head of Impact at Tony’s Chocolonely, says: “15 years after we launched our first chocolate bar to call on the industry, not enough has changed. With these bars, we aren’t pointing a finger, we’re calling on the whole chocolate industry, all brands, to take responsibility and to collaborate to make 100% slave free the norm in chocolate. We are all part of the problem and we can all be part of the sweet solution.”
Tony’s Chocolonely is on a mission to make 100% slave free the norm in chocolate, changing the industry from within by raising awareness of the issue, leading by example and inspiring key industry stakeholders to act. The Sweet Solution bars do all three in one go by demonstrating how fair chocolate – regardless of shape or flavor – can be made and enjoyed guiltlessly.
The chocolate bars are inspired by the world’s most iconic chocolate brands that together are the face of a big chocolate industry. However, they’re in fact very different: from their boldly branded wrappers to their chunky tablet format – these nougat pyramids, wafer strips, nutty crunch circles and caramel cookie strips are unmistakably Tony’s Chocolonely. And the bars are made following Tony’s 5 Sourcing Principles: using 100% traceable cocoa beans, paying a higher price, strengthening farmer cooperatives, engaging in long-term direct trading partnerships, and focusing on cocoa quality and productivity to optimise cocoa yields.
“Tony’s 5 Sourcing Principles are designed to create a fairer cocoa supply chain and address the root cause of modern slavery and illegal child labor: poverty,” explains Schoenmakers. “But it’s not enough if these principles are only implemented by us. So we’ve developed Tony’s Open Chain, an open source initiative available to all chocolate makers so they can do the same and that together we can make all chocolate slave-free.”
Together with other chocolate makers and partners, Tony’s has been campaigning for legislation to make companies responsible for human rights violations in their supply chains since 2017. With momentum building in the EU, a new administration in the US, and with the UN designating 2021 as the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, the message is clear. The time to act is now. But only together can we make 100% slave free the norm in chocolate. To be part of the sweet solution and call upon governments to act this year, sign Tony’s petition here: https://tonyschocolonely.com/petition
Tony’s Sweet Solution bars were created solely to raise issue-awareness and inspire everyone in the chocolate chain to act. All profits from the bars will be donated to 100WEEKS, an independent platform that uses direct cash transfers and financial training to assist women in escaping the cycle of extreme poverty.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Tony’s Chocolonely:
Tony’s Chocolonely is a B-Corp, Fairtrade-certified chocolate-maker that puts social impact before profit – going beyond certifications to make chocolate 100% slave-free. Not just their own chocolate, but all chocolate worldwide.
The company was founded in 2005 by three journalists from the Dutch TV show ‘Keuringsdienst van Waarde’ after they discovered that the world’s largest chocolate manufacturers were buying cocoa from plantations that used illegal child labor and modern slavery.
Since then, Tony’s Chocolonely has dedicated its efforts to raising awareness of and eliminating inequality in the chocolate industry. Tony’s Chocolonely leads by example, building direct long-term relationships with cocoa farmers in Ghana and Ivory Coast, paying them a higher price and working together to solve the underlying causes of modern slavery.
Tony’s Chocolonely wants to inspire the industry as a whole to make 100% slave-free the norm in chocolate. The brand has grown to become the market leader in the Netherlands and its bars are now available almost worldwide, with offices in the Netherlands, USA, UK and Germany (DACH).
For more information: