By Maitane Sardon

 

Nestle SA plans to reward farmers in West Africa for implementing practices that help it tackle child labor in cocoa farms and other sustainability issues in the cocoa supply chain.

On Thursday, the Swiss consumer-goods company said it will pay a cash incentive to cocoa farmers for efforts including enrolling children in school or the use of techniques that increase the quality and amount of cocoa produced.

As part of the program, under which Nestle plans to invest 1.3 billion Swiss francs ($1.4 billion) by 2030, farmers and their families will receive up to CFH500 during the first two years. The amount will be reduced to CFH250 after, Nestle said.

To qualify for the monetary incentive, Nestle said farmers need to meet criteria ranging from school enrollments for children to sustainable agricultural practices.

"Our goal is to have an additional tangible, positive impact on a growing number of cocoa-farming families, especially in areas where poverty is widespread and resources are scarce, and to help close the living income gap they face over time," Nestle Chief Executive Mark Schneider said.

The maker of Nescafe coffee and Purina pet food said the payments will be divided between the farmer and the spouse, as part of its goal to ensure women enjoy the same rights and opportunities as men.

To monitor participation, Nestle said it will work with the nonprofits the International Cocoa Initiative and Rainforest Alliance.

 

Write to Maitane Sardon at maitane.sardon@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 27, 2022 05:34 ET (10:34 GMT)

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