Facts about Olam International and SECO
Established in 1989, Olam is today a leading global agribusiness operation, from seed to shelf, supplying food and industrial raw materials to more than 22,000 customers worldwide. With 72,000 employees across 66 countries, leadership positions are built over 18 platforms, including cocoa, coffee, edible nuts, spices, rice, and cotton. In addition to the company’s own employees, the affiliated farmers lay the foundation for Olam’s success: In Côte d’Ivoire alone, the company works with more than 185,000 small farms, 14,000 of which are women-led. Cocoa, cashews, cotton, coffee, and rubber are grown. Sustainability is an important part of our core business: Olam’s approach to bolstering sustainability is to reimagine global agriculture in order to promote prosperous farmers and farming systems, regenerate the living world, and build thriving communities.
SECO – Olam’s cotton business in Côte d’Ivoire – started its activities in 2008 and built an integrated ginning model embracing an ecological and ethical approach to cotton production. SECO cooperates with the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Cotton made in Africa (CMIA), and other organizations. In 2018 SECO celebrated its 10th anniversary in Côte d’Ivoire. The Ivory Coast is the third-largest cotton-exporting country in Africa and exports 95 percent of its production. Olam/SECO cooperate in Africa with about 100,000 farmers in the cotton industry – more than 17,000 of them are located in Côte d’Ivoire. They produce 65,800 metric tons of raw cotton per year, equivalent to 28,500 metric tons of pure cotton fibers. In the sustainability sector, Olam focuses on 10 priority areas. They are also oriented toward the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the planetary limits set by the Stockholm Research Centre.