SAVABE Project - Our commitment to eliminate child labor

SAVABE Project - Our commitment to eliminate child labor9 October 2020

In 2020 we, together with Sambavanille, established a farmers' association in Madagascar called the Macky Association. Through this association we are able to register all our vanilla farmers. We make use of a digital system developed by Metajua and Ecocert to register the farmers, their production, working conditions, certifications and payments.

First training topic: child labor

After establishing the Macky Association, the first topic on our agenda was child labor. Our goal was to be able to guarantee that no child labor was used during production of our Madagascan vanilla. In July 2020, members of the Macky Association participated in a training around this sensitive topic. The training was organized and conducted by our sustainability manager in cooperation with the Sustainable Vanilla Initiative (SVI) and Save the Children.

Creating awareness

We focused our training on the most important points: what constitutes child labor, why this is such an important topic, and how to address the root cause that creates the need for children during production. By taking part in exercises and examples, the participants learned how to determine what is and what is not considered to be child labor. They also learned about the negative impact it has on the development and health of a child. We also educated the farmers about the legal implications related to international child labor laws. Lastly, we informed them of the specific reporting steps to take when they suspect child labor is occurring around them.

Continuous monitoring

Because the members of the Macky Association are convinced that child labor has a negative impact on the child’s development and health, they all agreed to sign our code of conduct in which the elimination of child labor is stipulated. We also have put a system in place of continuous monitoring in our areas of vanilla production in collaboration with the Save the Children project. We will keep on organizing regular trainings to keep this topic top of mind. By registering the working conditions and payments of the farmers, we also aim to negate the need for making use of children as part of the labor force.

A sustainable way to cultivate vanilla

Through the Macky Association we are working to create an environment in which Madagascan vanilla can sustainably be cultivated for many, many years to come. Eliminating child labor is one of the many steps towards reaching this goal.

Photo of Sambavanille employee next to a poster endorsing our participation in the fight against child labor.

For more information about SVI and this initiative, click here.

 

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