Daniele Giovannuci President, COSA

Will consumers be alienated by companies whose farmer suppliers cannot earn the basic income to have a decent life?

In the face of such global inequalities, recent responses – to launch another conference or a new fund –  are unlikely to address the structural problem or improve farmer incomes.

So, it is refreshing to see creative actions that are ‘outside the box’. Our UN colleagues recently hosted the COSA Board of Directors for two days in New York. I discovered that one division, UNDP, is boldly launching a chocolate bar and using simple technology to deliver value directly to cocoa farmers. It is not a perfect approach, and the scale is small, but the signal is big! They are frustrated by the lack of innovation in poverty and are doing something about it.

And are our development colleagues making a difference?

I recently spent a day with the Board and senior staff of the world’s second-biggest sustainability certification. The new Rainforest Alliance isn’t pressured to change, yet they see the scale of the problems and are choosing to fundamentally re-imagine how to best fulfill their mission.

Look forward to making a difference with you.