Since 2017, WRI has directly supported cocoa and chocolate companies through its supply chain monitoring platform Global Forest Watch Pro (GFW Pro). The online platform allows companies to securely manage deforestation risk and track progress towards their no-deforestation goals.
It enables companies to log into a private account, plot the location of thousands of farms and analyze these farms in relation to contextual information like tree cover loss and protected forests. This system has enabled companies including Cargill and Mondelēz to prioritize engagement in risky areas where cocoa farms might exist near national parks or other protected areas. Companies can also produce reports for public disclosure in support of their sustainable cocoa policies and commitments.
GFW Pro also has the potential to support fully compliant CFI monitoring. Technology providers have begun to develop maps detailing areas of cocoa production, and WRI is working with these providers and CFI stakeholders in West Africa to assess options for integrating these maps and other national and regional datasets into GFW Pro to better meet the cocoa sector’s needs.
At present, GFW Pro is operating in a preview period during which WRI is working with over 50 partners to perfect the system before a public launch later this year. After public launch, supply chain actors around the globe will be able to create accounts and begin managing deforestation risk.
A model like WRI’s Forest Atlas, which provides freely accessible infrastructure for online platforms that are hosted within and owned by national institutions, offers a solution for cocoa monitoring at a national scale. By combining official government data on land use with national and global datasets on forest change, this platform could enable CFI monitoring and management by governments.
The CFI’s industry wide commitment to collaborative and robust monitoring solutions is a commendable first step in combating deforestation. With monitoring systems in place, CFI signatories will be able to effectively measure and manage impacts from the cocoa sector. WRI looks forward to continuing to support positive change for West Africa and around the globe, so that consumers can rest easy knowing no forests were harmed in the making of that chocolate bar.