At Starbucks, we remain committed to responsibly sourcing coffee, tea and cocoa. We take this commitment seriously because we know that our future is directly linked to the livelihoods of farmers, suppliers, their families, local communities and our planet. Our approach to sourcing cocoa responsibly is built on a foundation of traceability, responsible purchasing practices and a commitment to supporting sustainable livelihoods for cocoa producers and their families, including reducing – and collectively working towards eliminating – the risks of child labor and cocoa-driven deforestation.
Starbucks is a signatory member of the Cocoa & Forest Initiative’s (CFI) framework to help end deforestation in Ivory Coast and a member of the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI) and the Swiss Platform for Sustainable Cocoa (SWISSCO) to evolve and strengthen our approach to responsibly-sourced cocoa. By engaging in these sector initiatives, we are committed to working with stakeholders to advance effective solutions and strengthen our contribution to the cocoa sector.
Human Rights and Deforestation
We continue to source Rainforest Alliance certified cocoa and pay premiums that are distributed through the value chain, including to cocoa farmers who achieve Rainforest Alliance certification. The standard set forth by Rainforest Alliance supports our due diligence efforts, in line with our global human rights statement, which reflects the UN Guiding Principles on Human Rights. And because certification is just one part of a holistic approach to building deforestation-free supply chains, we are also a signatory member of the Cocoa & Forest Initiative (CFI) that aims to:
- protect and restore forests that have been degraded
- address the root causes of deforestation by investing in sustainable agriculture and improved incomes of cocoa farmers
- focus on strong community engagement and social inclusion with a particular focus on women and youth to promote an inclusive community based on management models
In addition, Starbucks is building a more robust approach to human rights and deforestation – beginning with the review of our current human rights and deforestation policies over the next year, as well as deployment of a human and environmental rights saliency assessment.
Supporting Farmers and Their Families
Starbucks is committed to pursuing sustainable livelihoods for cocoa producers and their families. We pay a sustainability premium per metric ton of cocoa sourced to implement activities with cocoa producers, cooperatives and communities. Starbucks actively engages with its cocoa suppliers to collectively address the root causes of poverty through a smart mix of agronomic, environmental, social and capacity building interventions. As a member of the ISCO Working Group on Child Labor we are working with likeminded companies to eliminate all forms of child labor in line with UN targets.
We aspire to advance traceability in our supply chain and report progress in our 2024 Global Environmental Social Impact Report and our 2024 Cocoa & Forests Initiative (CFI) progress report. Through our Cocoa & Forests Initiative action plan we are committed to increasing our traceability through farm mapping within our direct supply chain and implementing traceability tools to increase transparency from first point of purchase by 2025.
Starbucks also participated in the 2023 Chocolate Scorecard, which aims to hold organizations accountable and provide more transparency around how brands are measured against key challenges facing the cocoa industry.
The Work Continues
Throughout Starbucks history, we have sought to be a different kind of company. We are driven by purpose, to create positive impact and we strive to lead by example. We know that addressing global systemic issues cannot be done alone and we will continue to partner closely with Rainforest Alliance, CFI and others to advance our collective goals.
Every year, we set ambitious goals across a range of Environmental, Sustainability and Governance (ESG) initiatives. We do this to meet the moment, and to exceed the expectations of our partners, customers, suppliers and the communities we work in every day. By doing this well, we support the responsible growth of our business. Learn more in our 2022 Global Environmental and Social Impact (GESI) Report.