The Lindt & Sprüngli
Farming Program

Challenges & Our Objectives

In our countries of origin, cocoa production faces deep-rooted challenges. Small farms, old and diseased cocoa trees, as well as limited agricultural practices, can result in low yields and insufficient income for farmers and their families. Poor infrastructure and a lack of access to farming equipment make production even more difficult. Finally, environmental challenges such as climate change and deforestation are crucial issues.

It is our priority to tackle these obstacles. The goal of the Farming Program is to create decent and resilient livelihoods for today’s and future cocoa farmers and their families, and sustainable intensification of agriculture. We aim to achieve this by facilitating higher productivity of farms, diversified household incomes, preservation of biodiversity and natural ecosystems, reduced risk of child labor, and improved infrastructure in communities.

 

Higher productivity of farms and at the same time, conservation of biodiversity and natural ecosystems
Diversified incomes and increased resilience of farmers
Improved community infrastructure
Reduction of the risk of child labor

What it's all about

The Lindt & Sprüngli Farming Program covers 100% of our cocoa beans and builds on the “bean to bar” model, which enables us to trace cocoa beans back to their origin, take responsibility, and directly support cocoa farmers and farming communities according to their context-specific individual needs. The cocoa beans in Lindt & Sprüngli's chocolates come from the Farming Program. The Farming Program was launched in 2008 in Ghana. We have since expanded it to all six of our cocoa bean sourcing origins: Ghana, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, Madagascar, Papua New Guinea, and Peru. With the inclusion of cocoa butter in 2021, the Lindt & Sprüngli Farming Program now also includes Côte d’Ivoire for the first time. The Farming Program empowers farmers to manage their farms in accordance with sound agricultural, social, ecological, and economic practices and to increase productivity. The engagement also targets the diversification of incomes and improved resilience of farmers and their smallholdings.

Local partners implement the Program in the field with a team of dedicated field staff. In 2021, more than 91,000 farmers and a team of 559 field staff are involved in the Farming Program globally.

The Farming Program guarantees us access to the supply of high-quality cocoa beans from a pre-defined and stable base of cocoa farmers, while our stakeholders can be assured that we source and process the traceable beans from the farmers in our externally verified Lindt & Sprüngli Farming Program. Since 2020, 100% of our cocoa beans are traceable back to the farmers and externally verified. This is a major step toward our target to source all cocoa products (beans, butter, powder) through sustainability programs by 2025.

Through our own sustainability program for cocoa beans, we ensure that our investments directly improve sustainability along our own value chain and reach farmers and their communities. It is managed similarly to a development program and is financed by price premiums paid for every ton of cocoa beans sourced, as well as contributions from The Lindt Cocoa Foundation. Since 2008, Lindt & Sprüngli has invested a total of CHF 61.4 million in the Farming Program, of which CHF 15.1 million was invested in 2021.

 

Our Approach – 4 Pillars

The four pillars of the Lindt & Sprüngli Farming Program

 

Tracing our beans

To create a positive impact for the farmers in our supply chain, we need to know where our cocoa beans come from. Therefore, our Program starts with:


Registering farmers and organizing them in groups for Program implementation

Gathering baseline data about farms (incl. GPS coordinates and farm polygons), farmers, and communities to assess their needs and design the Program

Establishing a sound traceability system of cocoa beans from the cocoa farmers all the way to our factory doors

Training the farmers

Through theoretical and practical training and coaching, farmers are enabled to professionalize:


Agricultural practices, including planting, maintenance, harvesting, fermentation, and drying of cocoa beans

Environmental practices, such as protection of biodiversity and the environment

Social practices and sensitization to topics such as health, safety, labor standards, and child labor

Business practices, including bookkeeping, farm management, and income diversification

Investments for farmers and communities

In order to enable farmers to diversify and increase their income as well as improve their resilience, the Program provides:


Productive and disease-resistant cocoa seedlings, as well as multi-purpose shade trees

In-kind premiums (e.g., farming tools and inputs) or cash premiums

Access to financial knowledge and services

Support for generating additional income through trainings and starting capital


Watch how our farmer investments are contributing to better farming practices in Ecuador:


Community Development

In order to support communities in their development, the Program provides:


Access to drinking water through construction of water systems and boreholes


A Child Labour Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS), including primary school refurbishment

Independently verifying our program

For the purpose of assuring the effectiveness and credibility of the Program, a structured internal and external evaluation takes place:


Internal monitoring by Program field staff based on yearly visits to all farmers in the Program to evaluate the progress of farmers’ agricultural, social, ecological, and economic practices

Annual external assessment by the Earthworm Foundation, including visits to each origin

Identification, discussion, and implementation of corrective actions based on data gathered and the external assessment results for continuous improvement of the Program

Our Farming Program Milestones

2008

Start of the Farming Program
in Ghana, with focus on traceability
and community development.

2012

Extension of the Farming Program
to cover four pillars: traceability, training,
community support and verification.

2013

Lindt Cocoa Foundation
is established.

2014

Start of the Farming Program
in Ecuador

2015

Start of the Farming Program
in Madagascar

2016

Cocoa bean supply chain from Ghana
is 100% traceable and externally verified.

2017

Start of the Farming Program
in Papua New Guinea.

2018

Start of the Farming Program
in Dominican Republic.

All countries from which Lindt & Sprüngli sources cocoa beans are now part of the Farming Program.

2019

Launch of the No-Deforestation and
Agroforestry Action Plan for Cocoa.

2020

Interim goal reached:
100% traceable and externally verified cocoa bean supply

2021

Start of the Farming Program in Peru.

2021

Start of the Farming Program in Côte d’Ivoire
with the inclusion of cocoa butter.

2025

By 2025, 100% of cocoa will be sourced through sustainability programs.

Our Cocoa Bean Origins

Our Cocoa Bean Origins

Ghana

Part of the Farming Program since 2008, currently with 69,101 farmers

Ecuador

Part of the Farming Program since 2014, currently with 8,634 farmers

Madagascar

Part of the Farming Program since 2015, currently with 2,388 farmers

Papua New Guinea

Part of the Farming Program since 2017, currently with 4,301 farmers

Dominican Republic

Part of the Farming Program since 2018, currently with 823 farmers

Peru

Part of the Farming Program since 2021, currently with 850 farmers

Côte d'Ivoire

Part of the Farming Program since 2021, currently with 5,462 farmers

100% Commitment

100% of our cocoa beans are traceable back to the farmers and externally verified

Memberships & Partnerships

Top