Executive Summary of Sustainability Strategy

Our Vision

At Lindt & Sprüngli, we are proud to produce the highest quality premium chocolate. But our vision is not just to make the finest products; it is to match these high standards with equally high ethical and sustainability standards in every aspect of our business. We call this the ‘The LINDT promise’: That all products leaving our factories live up to our commitment to sustainable behaviour along the supply chain.

This commitment starts at executive level and runs throughout everything we do, from sourcing, to production and consumption. It is a commitment we are in a particularly good position to honour because of the unusual degree of control we have over production.

Although we have achieved a great deal in recent years, we know there is more to do. And we are continuing our efforts to understand and tackle the challenges ahead.

Sustainably Sourced

We go to considerable lengths to ensure the sustainability of our ingredients and packaging, developing long-term relationships with small local suppliers of milk and sugar in Switzerland, the European Union and the USA, sourcing our almonds from California and our hazelnuts from Italy and Turkey. Most packaging materials are also sourced locally to reduce transport costs and emissions, and to support the local economy. We are working to reduce the overall amount we use, but packaging is important to the protection of our products, and while we use recyclable materials for wrapping products, we only use recycled materials for outer packaging and displays.

Global third-party schemes as yet certify only a very small amount of the cocoa bean crop. So we have to take our own measures to ensure our raw materials are sourced sustainably. The first step is traceability. Knowing where the beans come from allows us to understand how they are produced and what help the farmers and their communities need to ensure their welfare and well-being.

In general, we distinguish two different types of cocoa beans: consumer beans (“Forastero”) and flavour beans (“Criollo” and “Trinitario”). Our ‘consumer’ beans come exclusively from Ghana. In 2008, together with a local partner and the Ghanaian government organization, Cocobod, we initiated a project called ‘Ghana Traceable’. This allows us to trace the origin of the cocoa beans right back to the communities where they were collected, giving us the best possible quality control at source and bringing us closer to the people who grow and harvest our raw materials.

We continue taking all necessary steps to assure that our premium ingredients comply with the highest ethical standards. The leadership role we have taken in identifying our cocoa suppliers has opened the door to new opportunities. Building on traceability, we initiated in 2012 an independent verification project. The independent verification of the farms will allow us to assure the absence of human trafficking, forced labour and the worst forms of child labour. In the period of 2012 - 2016 the verification process for all our traceable Ghana cocoa beans will be implemented.

The success of Ghana Traceable encouraged us to expand the project to a similar programme for the sourcing of the ‘flavour' beans from Caribbean and South American origins, mainly Ecuador.

It is furthermore the intention of Lindt & Sprüngli to extend the verification process to cover Lindt’s entire cocoa supply chain by 2020.

We are also involved in supporting biodiversity and improving farming practices by a recently initiated project. Thereby the objective is to provide farmers with tools to differentiate traditional cocoa trees from more recently developed crossings for future propagation. Cocoa has been cultivated in the tropics for more than three millennia, but traditional knowledge and skills in bean cultivation and processing in the producing regions are fading. Together with a number of partner organizations, we are helping to reintroduce these disappearing techniques in order to make farming more sustainable, improving crop yields and quality.

As well as being a member of the World Cocoa Foundation, we work with Source Trust and the Cocobod Armajaro Traceable Foundation to fund farmer training schemes and investments in infrastructure, health, education, sanitation, water and power supply. And, in Ghana, we support specific projects such as the African Cocoa Initiative. The initiative aims at doubling cocoa productivity for 100’000 farm households through capacity building and in doing so to raise per capita income by 150 - 200 %.

Sustainable production

We are committed to conducting our business in an environmentally sustainable, ethically, legally and socially responsible manner, not just as employers, but as a part of society as a whole.

So, while our employees, our biggest and most treasured asset, are guaranteed fair and safe employment by practices enshrined in three documents: our Credo, our Business Code of Conduct and our Health & Safety Policy, we also make a wider commitment, as a good corporate citizen to bear our fair share of taxes and to support local projects and initiatives.

We are also good citizens when it comes to respecting the environment, with strict measures in place for the continued reduction of waste, energy and water consumption, and CO
2 emissions.

Sustainable consumption

As producers of some of the world’s finest chocolates, we will never compromise on quality or food safety. There is an entire quality management network engaged in assuring the excellence of our products – from raw materials to the release of the products to the consumer.

External food safety auditors inspect every one of our manufacturing units annually, unannounced, and all Lindt & Sprüngli production sites have repeatedly passed the audit with the highest marks.

We label all ingredients clearly on the packaging of all our products, in accordance with national and international laws, and, while the majority of our raw materials are pure and natural, we are working to reduce or eliminate any non-natural additives.


© 2013 Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprüngli AG, Kilchberg (Switzerland).

While local language translations may be made, the original English version will remain the only official version.