Tony’s Chocolonely was founded in 2005 by Teun van der Keuken, a Dutch journalist who was shocked to learn that child labour was still endemic across the cocoa industry, where an estimated two million children are working on cocoa plantations in Africa, often conducting hazardous and forced labour in terrible conditions.
He decided to start his own 100% slave free chocolate company. This required a total transformation of the market, with buy-in from all stakeholders involved. In 2005, Tony’s Chocolonely was founded with exactly that mission. Tony’s Chocolonely does not source cocoa beans mass-balance, but chooses to work with a number of dedicated farming cooperatives in Ghana and Ivory Coast.
By working closely together with the farmer coops and applying Tony’s five sourcing principles, Tony’s Chocolonely is convinced that this holds the key to ending child slavery. The five sourcing principles are: paying a premium; engaging in long-term relationships; strong cooperations; continuous improvement in production and quality; and ‘bean to bar’ traceability.
Technology plays an important role in the requirement is to have a fully transparent ‘bean to bar’ supply chain, knowing the origin, the flow and the quantities of the beans. Microsoft partner ChainPoint was commissioned by Tony’s Chocolonely to develop the BeanTracker platform which, built on Microsoft .NET, realises data collection from the farmer coop down until production. Farmer coops, and all supply chain actors from bean to bar, are connected to the platform, entering data on a weekly basis in the BeanTracker platform.
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