Reflects the shared goals of Hershey and Côte
d'Ivoire's National Strategy for Sustainable Cocoa to improve
childhood education and preserve ecosystems in cocoa-producing
Pa., April 27, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- The Hershey
Company (NYSE: HSY) today announced that it will be partnering with
Côte d'Ivoire government agencies and non-governmental
organizations through public-private partnerships to invest in the
construction of ten primary schools in cocoa-growing communities
and implement a focused program to preserve the Mabi-Yaya Nature
Reserve. Purposefully aligned with the objectives of Côte
d'Ivoire's National Strategy for Sustainable Cocoa and Hershey's
new Income Accelerator, these investments reflect a shared
commitment to ensuring a better and more sustainable cocoa supply
chain for years to come.
"Access to education for children and environmental conservation
are critical components of our broader Cocoa For Good strategy and
vital to building healthy communities where cocoa farmers and their
families live," said Chuck Raup,
President, U.S., The Hershey Company. "We are proud to take an
active role in creating greater access to primary schooling and
building the critical conservation programming needed to support
healthy cocoa ecosystems and farmer income resilience."
Working with the National Oversight Committee of Actions against
child trafficking, exploitation and child labor (CNS), chaired by
Côte d'Ivoire First Lady Dominique
Ouattara, and the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI),
Hershey will fund the construction of ten schools. As part of
Hershey's commitment to improve children's well-being and prevent
and eliminate child labor, these schools will create critical
infrastructure to enable generations of children to succeed.
Further, Hershey will partner with the Foundation for the Parks
and Reserves of Côte d'Ivoire to advance preservation efforts in
the Mabi-Yaya Nature Reserve (RNMY), which was created in 2019 in
the heart of the country's southeastern cocoa producing area.
Hershey's investment will support conservation and management
activities implemented by the Ivorian Office of Parks and Reserves
(OIPR), including replanting nearly 1000 hectares of degraded
lands, conducting a biodiversity census inside RNMY, strengthening
existing ecological monitoring capabilities and engaging local
communities for support. These efforts to restore RNMY's natural
integrity further Hershey's broader commitment to mitigate the
effects of climate change and deliver on its Cocoa & Forests
Initiative (CFI) action plans.
The Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development of Côte
d'Ivoire fully appreciates this partnership with Hershey which will
strengthen its actions on the entire network of protected areas and
contribute at the international level to the achievement of the
Aïchi targets on the global importance of biological diversity.
"Collaboration between public and private actors remains the
most effective option for ending child labor in cocoa production,"
said Dominique Ouattara, First Lady
of Côte d'Ivoire, President of the National Oversight Committee of
Actions against child trafficking, exploitation and child
Matthias Lange, Executive
Director of ICI, a multistakeholder organization tackling child
labor and forced labor in cocoa, added, "We are pleased to support
this important collaboration to improve access to quality
education. In line with national priorities, we know that improving
access to quality schools is an important step in tackling child
labor in cocoa-growing communities."
These investments in education and conservation complement
Hershey's Income Accelerator announced today and collectively
advance the objectives set in Côte d'Ivoire's National Strategy for
Sustainable Cocoa. All three initiatives work together to create a
more sustainable cocoa supply chain and counteract the interrelated
issues of farmer poverty, child labor and deforestation.
About The Hershey Company
The Hershey Company is headquartered in Hershey, Pa., and is an industry-leading
snacks company known for bringing goodness to the world through its
iconic brands, remarkable people and enduring commitment to help
children succeed. Hershey has nearly 20,000 employees around the
world who work every day to deliver delicious, quality products.
The company has more than 100 brand names in approximately 80
countries around the world that drive $10.4
billion in annual revenues, including such iconic brand
names as Hershey's, Reese's, Kit Kat®, Jolly Rancher and Ice
Breakers, and fast-growing salty snacks including SkinnyPop,
Pirate's Booty and Dot's Homestyle Pretzels.
For more than 125 years, Hershey has been committed to operating
fairly, ethically and sustainably. Hershey founder,
Milton Hershey, created the Milton
Hershey School in 1909 and since then the company has focused on
helping children succeed.
To learn more visit thehersheycompany.com.
With the mission to monitor and evaluate the actions of the
Government and non-governmental actors in the fight against
trafficking, exploitation and child labor, the CNS represents one
of the key institutional actors of the national mechanism to fight
against the worst forms of child labor in Côte d'Ivoire. The main
missions of the CNS are to monitor and evaluate the actions of the
government and national actors in the fight against child
trafficking and the worst forms of child labor in Côte
About the Foundation for the Parks and Reserves of Côte
The Foundation for the Parks and Reserves of Cote d'Ivoire is a non-profit organization
that manages funds for programs to support conservation efforts in
Cote d'Ivoire's national parks and
ICI is a Swiss-based, non-profit foundation that works to ensure
a better future for children in cocoa-growing communities. It is a
multi-stakeholder partnership advancing the elimination of child
labour and forced labour, by uniting the forces of the cocoa and
chocolate industry, civil society, farming communities,
governments, international organizations and donors.
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SOURCE The Hershey Company