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Sharing our expertise on the cocoa sector at Amsterdam Cocoa Week

KIT is delighted to partner with and co-sponsor Amsterdam Cocoa Week! We will kick off the week-long event by hosting an eye-opening session titled, ‘Unpacking the Relationship Between Income and Child Labour in Cocoa’.

Over the years, KIT has been actively involved in testing and evaluating strategies to increase household income for farmers towards earning a living income and eliminate child labour in the cocoa sector. We’re very keen to share this experience and expertise, along with our partners, at Amsterdam Cocoa Week (ACW).

These discussions are all the more critical and timely given the significant policy developments implemented in the European Union (EU) in 2023.

Talking about interventions for impact

We will host one session and participate in two other sessions, hosted by our partners. Our focus will be on child labour and cash transfers.

While income improvement and reducing child labour have become priorities across the sector, there is too little evidence on how these can be addressed. Interventions often lack rigorous evidence on their impact and differences in used indicators and methodologies limit the comparability of existing evidence. Moreover, the link between income and child labour are currently not well understood. For example, a 2023 KIT study demonstrated that households earning the equivalent of the living income benchmark had the highest prevalence of hazardous child labour. 

These results suggest that interventions aimed at increasing cocoa-producing households’ income through sustainable intensification of cocoa production or income diversification may, in fact, unintentionally increase the risk of child labour by increasing household labour demand.

So, we’ve joined several companies, partners in the cocoa sector, and implementing agencies as a knowledge partner to pilot test interventions such as labour-saving technologies, village savings, and cash transfers, and evaluate their impact on households’ incomes, child labour prevalence, and children’s wellbeing.

A contribution to the future of cocoa

We will share our findings from these interventions, our work on living income and child labour, and our research agenda during the session on 5 February 2024. 

For details about the other sessions we’ll be participating in please see below.

This event will offer stakeholders in the cocoa sector the opportunity to connect and inspire one another and shape their contribution to the future of cocoa. If you’d like to be a part of this discussion you can register for the week-long event here

Sessions at ACW

Unpacking the relationship between income and child labour in the cocoa sector

Date: 5 February 2024

Time: 0900-1030

About the session: Our experts will present our work on child labour in the cocoa sector and our research agenda. In doing so, we translate evidence-based knowledge into application strategies and ways forward. To better protect children, we need to further understand the relationship between household income and child labour, and explore how income related approaches can complement other existing systems to tackle child labour and define ways to safeguard against unintended risks. In this session, key learnings are presented and are translated into practices, and discussed for ways forward.

This session will be moderated by KIT’s new Managing Director for the Knowledge Unit, Mayada El-Zoghbi, and is in partnership with International Cocoa Initiative (ICI), Tony’s Open Chain and ECOM.

Launch Cocoa Household Income Study

Date: 5 February 2024

Time: 1100 – 1200

About the session: Our experts Selma van der Haar and Oumou Diallo will present the standard Cocoa Household Income Study (CHIS) methodology that they have developed in collaboration with Wageningen University, World Cocoa Foundation, GIZ and SWISSCO. The methodology is currently being vetted by the cocoa industry and will serve as a standard for sector wide methodological alignment on households’ living income gap and impact measurement (indicators, tools and approaches).

Trilogy on pricing II – simply cash?

Date: 8 February 2024

Time: 10:30 –12:00

About the session: KIT expert, Rik Habraken will join a panel on cash transfers and living income as part of CHOCOA, part of ACW, that will be held on 8 and 9 February. Rik will share his views on cash transfers to cocoa farming households and share findings from recent projects on how to make cash transfer programs more effective. He will also discuss the potential of cash transfers with regards to price increases, and share some insights in the effects of cash transfer programmes in Cote d’Ivoire.

Related projects and publications

  • EnRoute – To Reduce the Living Income Gap and Child Labour

    • Institute
    • Project

    Poverty among cocoa farming households is still a key driver of child labour. The average cocoa farming household in West Africa earns less than one-third of the established living income needed to afford a place to live, food for the entire family, health care, and clothing and education for children, and cannot put some money […]

  • Nestlé Income Accelerator Programme (IAP)

    • Institute
    • Project

    This innovative intervention aims to tackle child labour, decrease poverty, promote diversification and push for more gender equality. The Income Accelerator Programme (IAP) is a four-year program initiated by Nestlé and six of their traders aimed at increasing the income levels of 10,000 cocoa farming households in Côte d’Ivoire while reducing the prevalence and risk of […]

  • Unleashing the Potential of Cocoa Households to Earn a Living Income

    • Institute
    • Project

    The Nestlé Cocoa Plan (NCP) Elite programme aims to unleash the potential of a small selection of cocoa farmers and learn from them about how the programme can be expanded to help more farmers earn a living income. KIT assists Nestlé in understanding how successful this programme currently is and how it can be scaled up. Earning a living income is elusive for most cocoa farmers in Côte d’Ivoire  Only a small segment of cocoa-growing households in Côte d’Ivoire earn a living income. […]

  • Living Income and Child Labour in the Cocoa Sector of Côte d’Ivoire

    • Institute
    • Publication

    KIT Working Paper Child labour remains a persistent human rights violation in international commodity supply chains, adversely impacting children’s physical and mental health and depriving them of educational opportunities (UNICEF, 2020). This holds true for the cocoa sector in Côte d’Ivoire; a country that produces 43% of all cocoa worldwide (ICCO, 2022). A nationwide study […]

  • Nestlé Income Accelerator Program – Midline report of the Pilot Phase (2023)

    • Institute
    • Publication

    The Income Accelerator Program (IAP) aims to tackle key issues facing farm households in the cocoa sector – such as Living Income (LI) gap, child labor, and lack of women empowerment – by enhancing cocoa productivity, increasing additional income sources, improving gender equality, creating a professional labor force, and improving access to loans and savings. […]

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