Right now, there is slavery on cocoa farms in West Africa: 2.1 million children work illegally, and more than 30,000 children and adults are victims of modern slavery in Ghana and Ivory Coast as a result of the unequally divided cocoa chain. Tony’s Chocolonely exists to change this. Our vision is 100% slave-free chocolate – not just our chocolate, but all chocolate worldwide.
We started in 2005 when a team of Dutch journalists discovered these issues in the cocoa supply chain and became determined to put it into the global spotlight. When we couldn’t get support from the big chocolate suppliers, we decided to change the industry from within and show the world that chocolate can be made differently – in taste, packaging and the way that you treat cocoa farmers. This remains our focus almost 15 years later.
Support from retailers and chocolate eaters is essential because we can’t achieve our mission alone. Alone, we can make our own chocolate slave free. But only together with customers, retailers, government and other big chocolate companies, can we make all chocolate 100% slave free.
There are lots of ways that choco fans can help us share our chocolate and share our story. If you are a big Tony’s fan and advocate of our mission, you can graduate to be a Serious Friend by signing up on our website. In the Netherlands this will give you access to our Serious Friends Toolkit. Through here you can watch our documentary, put on your own screening or download posters and materials to host your own Tony Talk about the problems in the chocolate supply chain.
We also host open house afternoons where you can come and hear from one of Tony’s Teams about their contribution to our mission – from our Impact team who work on the ground in Africa, to our Movement team who lobby governments for legislative change globally. And there are easy fun ways to spread the word too.
In the Netherlands you can create your own bespoke Tony’s bar through our website to send as a gift (or keep for yourself). All of this helps to empower you as chocolate eaters to spread the word for us and grow the ripple effect of change. As we grow in the UK, we will launch the Serious Friends Toolkit and be offering fun ways to get involved with our mission.
At Tony’s it is important that we are also having ongoing open conversations with other chocolate companies. Our end goal is that they join our ‘Open Chain’ and adopt our five sourcing principles as a big step toward making their supply chain 100% slave free. This change won’t happen overnight, but we have already seen big retailers such as Albert Heijn in the Netherlands make the big decision to source cocoa according to our principles for all its own-label Delicata range of bars. So, we are making progress, and we won’t stop until we have achieved our goal. Together we’ll make slave-free the norm in chocolate.
What we love about it: From providing tools to campaign against slavery for their customers, to creating a platform for businesses to rally behind the cause, this brand knows what it means to inspire and empower their peers.
Find out more: tonyschocolonely.com