Tony’s Chocolonely was founded in 2005 by an investigative reporter who had discovered that major chocolate manufacturers were not upholding their pledge to use ethically sourced chocolate. He founded Tony’s to create a chocolate bar that used 100% slave-free cocoa. Teun van de Keuken, the founder, named the brand as such because he felt that he was the only person in the chocolate industry interested in seriously eradicating slave labor (Chocolonely).
They have 5 major rules for their ethical cocoa:
- Traceable beans using Tony’s Beantracker
- A higher premium paid to farmers to help close the poverty gap
- Ensure strength of farmers by training them to work professionally in a cooperative
- Ensure 5-year contracts with their farmers to allow the farmers the opportunity to make long-term investments
- Improve productivity on farms to make the same work more efficient and reduce farmers’ dependency on the cocoa trade
Their main focus is slave-free cocoa, but they prioritize the environment by training their farmers to reduce pesticide use, they offset 100% of their emissions through Justdiggit, and they are '“taking steps” to reduce their future emissions.
- They paid external researchers to research forced labor in their value chain; their website claims that the researchers found no recent cases of modern slavery, as well as 4 adult cases of slavery in the past and some “unclear informal labour agreements” with farmers. They claim to be working on these cases with their cooperatives.
- They asked True Price, a social enterprise which calculates the ‘true price’ of products including externalities such as CO2 emissions and slavery; True Price found that the cost of living in Ghana was higher than Tony’s accounted for, so Tony’s adjusted for the next season. True Price concluded that the negative impact of Tony’s was 55% lower than the average.
- They release an annual FAIR report on their website showing “impact results” from the previous fiscal year and their goals for the future.
- “Besides telling you what we achieved, we’ll tell you where we didn’t succeed”