Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement by Tchibo Coffee
This statement sets out Tchibo Coffee International Limited’s our actions to understand all potential modern slavery risks related in our business and to put in place steps that are aimed at ensuring that there is no slavery or human trafficking in our business and our supply chains. This statement relates to actions and activities during the financial year 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020.
As part of the coffee industry, we recognise that we have a responsibility to take a robust approach to slavery and human trafficking.
We are committed to preventing slavery and human trafficking in our corporate activities, and to ensuring that our supply chains are free from slavery and human trafficking.
1. Organisational Structure, our Business and our Supply Chains
1.1 We are primarily a coffee distributor, offering fresh, sustainably-sourced coffees to businesses such as catering, university, hotels and convivence sectors in the UK and Ireland. We employ around 170 employees where half of these are field based who provide regular, face-to-face contact with customers. The remainder are office based that support the everyday function of our business from telesales, marketing, finance, commercial, customer support, HR, production and warehouse. Our customers range from cafés, restaurants, pubs and contract caterers and include both national retail chains and single-outlet independents.
1.2 Our founders first started the business selling coffee to the home consumer back in 1949, over 70 years ago. The business remains owned by the same family. Tchibo Coffee International Limited came to the UK in 1991 where we have grown through different sectors and channels of business. We continue to operate as a standalone entity but with a new platform for further expansion and innovation with recent acquisitions of Matthew Algie (2016) and Capitol Foods (2018).
1.3 We source coffee to meet the requirements for our blends based upon quality, flavour, seasonality and sustainability. We have worked hard over the years to consolidate our supply chain and develop direct, long-term relationships with suppliers in coffee growing regions, though we buy green (unroasted) coffee through intermediary coffee traders who help facilitate the logistics and administration relating to our purchases. Our pioneering commitment to sustainability certifications complements our commitment to long-term relationships with suppliers. We launched in the UK a triple certified espresso (Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and Organic) in 2017 and more than 47% of the coffee we buy holds one or more of these certifications.
1.4 As well as coffee, we offer customers a convenient one stop shop, catering to all their needs. We mainly do this by working with selected third-party suppliers to offer customers a range of machines and “everything but the coffee” via our Espresso Warehouse brand. Our Espresso Warehouse catalogue range includes teas, hot chocolate powders, flavoured syrups, delicious treats and barista kits. Our commitment to sustainability certifications is maintained in these non-coffee products, with many of the relevant supply chains, most notably for our tea and hot chocolate products, holding Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance or Organic certification.
1.5 The contents of this statement refer solely to steps taken by Tchibo Coffee International Limited, including the Espresso Warehouse business unit.
2. Countries of Operation
We currently operate in the following countries:
2.1 United Kingdom
3. Assessment of Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Risk in Our Business and Our Supply Chains
3.1 We are committed to ensuring that there is no modern slavery or human trafficking in our supply chains or in any part of our business. Our Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy (available upon request for external parties from our HR department) website reflects our commitment to acting ethically and with integrity in all our business relationships and to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure slavery and human trafficking is not taking place anywhere in our supply chains. We have a zero-tolerance approach to all human rights violations across the business and our supply chains.
3.2 We have formally started assessing the risk of modern slavery in our business and supply chains. To plan our actions effectively, we also prioritised the areas that are of greatest importance to us as a business and are within our range of influence.
3.3 The outcomes of our assessment for 2018 are displayed in the below matrix. The results demonstrate few significant changes in 2018 and confirm that we should concentrate primarily on our coffee, tea and hot chocolate supply chains, alongside the sub-contractors that we choose to work with on-site.
3.4 The fall in the international market price for Arabica coffee to a twelve year low in September has further increased the risk of modern slavery in coffee supply chains. The price fall has been caused by a number of factors including particularly good output from the world’s largest coffee producing countries, leading to estimated over-supply of 10 million bags, and, record levels of speculative trading on coffee contracts putting further downward pressure on prices. As explained below, buying certified coffee helps to protect producers from these price slumps, but we are aware that many of the cooperatives we buy from will not be selling all of their coffee on Fairtrade and organic certified terms, meaning most of the organisations in our supply chains will still have been affected to some extent by the price decline.