Product Certification

Cocoa Program

Cocoa farmers are often forced to sell their harvest to middlemen who rig scales or misrepresent prices, and media reports of child slavery show the stark contrast between the delicious treat and the difficult conditions of the people who produce it. Fair Trade certification ensures that farmers receive a fair price, allows farmers to invest in techniques that bring out the flavors of the region, and strictly prohibits slave and child labor.

Contact Us to learn more about the Cocoa Program

Importers

How to Import Fair Trade Cocoa

  • Sign a Fair Trade USA certification and licensing agreement.
  • Pay Fair Trade USA an annual importer fee of $500.
  • Purchase Fair Trade Certified cocoa from Fair Trade cooperatives, producer groups or exporters certified by FLO-Cert. Sell Fair Trade Certified cocoa to other Fair Trade registered traders and operators.
  • Pay at least the Fair Trade minimum price and the designated Fair Trade premium to the certified cooperative--see the Pricing Database.
  • Submit quarterly reports to Fair Trade USA on Fair Trade Certified imports and sales. Undergo, and comply with, regular desk audits and on-site audits.
Manufacturers and Brands

How to Sell Fair Trade Cocoa

  • Sign a Fair Trade USA certification and licensing agreement.
  • Purchase Fair Trade Certified cocoa from a registered importer or manufacturer.
  • Submit a product profile application for each product to be labeled.
  • Submit all packaging, sales and marketing material carrying the Fair Trade Certified logo to Fair Trade USA for approval.
  • Submit quarterly reports on Fair Trade Certified cocoa purchases and product sales. Undergo, and comply with, regular desk audits and on-site audits.
  • Brands pay a fee based on quarterly sales of labeled Fair Trade Certified products.
  • Please ask about our program for small-scale partners, as lower fees and reporting requirements apply.
  • Please note: For composite products with more than one ingredient, all ingredients that can be Fair Trade Certified should be Fair Trade Certified. For example, in a chocolate bar, the cane sugar, cocoa and vanilla should all be sourced from Fair Trade Certified producers. Processed formats and byproducts may also be eligible for certification. For example, if a cosmetic product contains cocoa butter from Fair Trade Certified producers, the cosmetic may be eligible for Fair Trade labeling.