More companies are crafting in-house ethical standards
London — From cocoa to tea, food and drink companies are setting their own standards for ethical sourcing of raw materials, moving away from third-party labels such as Fairtrade. Mondelez International, owner of chocolate brands Cadbury and Toblerone, Unilever, which is behind tea brands such as Lipton and PG Tips, and Barry Callebaut, the world’s biggest producer of chocolate and cocoa products, have all introduced their own schemes. They say their targets are more comprehensive and some claim their schemes are more effective in tracking whether a product is ethically sourced every step of the way. With companies under financial pressure, analysts say it has also been a way to save money. But critics are worried that the standards third-party groups such as UTZ Certified or Rainforest Alliance have fought to establish risk being muddled and what is deemed ethical and sustainable could become more ambiguous. "Standards measuring environmental and social issues need to be transparent...
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