The Japan-headquartered trading company Itochu, which is involved in both domestic and international trading of products such as textiles, metals, minerals and food products including cocoa, has joined ICI as a contributing partner.

The company joins ICI in order to exchange best practice with other ICI members, in addition to gaining access to the latest knowledge and research on how to tackle child labour in cocoa, it explained.

Itochu has established its sustainability approach based on the original spirit of “Sampo-yoshi”, which aims to bring about and lead towards a sustainable society. The company explained that cooperation with ICI will help promote these aims, in particular to help create sustainable and responsible supply chains with their partners.

For ICI Executive Director, Matthias Lange, the addition of Itochu to ICI’s membership is a positive step forward and underlines the growing recognition of the many challenges within the sector, in all regions of the world. “We are very pleased to welcome Itochu to ICI. We look forward to working with them on their sustainability approach and cocoa sourcing practices and we applaud their commitment to tackling child labour in cocoa,” he explained.