SCHIPOL, THE NETHERLANDS — Cargill has signed a formal partnership to support Mondel?z International’s goal of reaching more than 200,000 farmers in cocoa growing regions and eventually  sourcing 100% of Mondel?z’s cocoa from sustainable sources, Cargill said Feb. 19.

The partnership initially will focus on supporting cocoa farmers and communities in West Africa. Expanding activities to Indonesia is being explored.

“Improving the livelihoods of farmers and the living standards of cocoa growing communities is critical to securing a sustainable future for cocoa,” said Taco Terheijden, director of Sustainable Cocoa, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate. “Partnering with customers like Mondel?z International ensures benefits flow to farmers and helps to accelerate progress towards a sustainable supply chain, a goal commonly shared by the industry and supported by the World Cocoa Foundation’s CocoaAction strategy.”

Cargill, Minneapolis, and Mondeléz International, Deerfield, Ill., both have cocoa sustainability programs. The Cocoa Life program from Mondel?z has three principles. First, it seeks to empower farmers and communities. For the second principle, the company seeks to create partnerships with governments, non-governmental organizations (N.G.O.s), supply chain partners and communities. Finally, Mondel?z aligns its cocoa sourcing so that the company’s partners along all of its supply chains support the sustainable cocoa approach.

Cargill follows a Cocoa Promise program. It focuses on farmer training to increase productivity and profitability, community support to give cocoa families and communities access to education and health care, and farm development to prepare cocoa farms for the future.

“We are pleased to welcome Cargill as a partner in Cocoa Life,” said Cathy Pieters, program director for Mondel?z International’s Cocoa Life program. “A sustainable cocoa supply begins with thriving farming communities, and more efficient farming leads to more empowered farmers making higher incomes. Cargill’s on-the-ground network is a key asset, and they are committed as we are to measuring the real results of their initiatives. Together we can generate a significant impact in these communities and across the industry as a whole.”