CHICAGO — Nestle U.S.A. will source 100% certified Nestle Cocoa Plan cocoa beans for its entire line of Nestle Crunch bars, the company announced at the Sweets & Snacks Expo.

The Nestle Cocoa Plan was first launched in 2009 and is a $120 million initiative to help improve cocoa sustainability and the livelihoods of cocoa farmers through social and economic programs. The programs include education and training, distributing higher-yielding plants, improving infrastructure, rebuilding or refurbishing schools, and addressing and eliminating child labor.

“Recent surveys have shown that a growing number of consumers are seeking foods made with responsibly sourced ingredients,” said Robert Kilmer, president of confections and snacks for Nestle. “Actions taken under the Nestle Cocoa Plan help socially aware consumers feel good about benefitting people and communities in other parts of the world.”

At the end of 2013, Nestle will purchase enough certified Cocoa Plan beans to produce its entire Nestle Crunch line. The beans will be certified by UTZ Certified. Ultimately, the company would like to produce its entire confectionery line with Nestle Cocoa Plan cocoa.