Tony’s Chocolonely adapts governance to enforce slavery-free commitment

Tony’s Chocolonely has created what it calls a ‘Mission Lock’, providing a governing structure aiming to protect its mission of ensuring chocolate is “100% slave-free”.

The chocolate manufacturer will appoint Honest Tea founder Seth Goldman as chair, broadcaster Ikenna Azuike, and former chief of impact for Tony’s Anne-Wil Dijkstra as ‘mission guardians’ to oversee the new structure.

Despite its ethical ambitions, Tony’s Chocolonely has not yet reached a 100%-slave free supply chain, with 4.4% of child labour found to be used in 2022.

The guardians will have several escalation rights to hold Tony’s Chocolonely leadership to account publicly and judicially. What’s more, stakeholders can contact the guardians anonymously to raise concerns.

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The company will also introduce a legal share that includes voting rights and allows selected individuals to prevent legal changes to the mission’s definition and principles.

Tony’s Chocolonely CEO Douglas Lamont told The Grocer the initiative is “another example of Tony’s raising the bar”.

“A growing number of purpose-driven companies are looking for ways to secure their impact models at the core of their business permanently and irrevocably, independent of shareholder structure,” he continued.



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