List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor

The Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) maintains a list of goods and their source countries which it has reason to believe are produced by child labor or forced labor in violation of international standards, as required under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) of 2005 and subsequent reauthorizations. The List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor comprises 155 goods from 77 countries, as of September 30, 2020.

ILAB maintains the List primarily to raise public awareness about forced labor and child labor around the world and to promote efforts to combat them; it is not intended to be punitive, but rather to serve as a catalyst for more strategic and focused coordination and collaboration among those working to address these problems.

Publication of the List has resulted in new opportunities for ILAB to engage with foreign governments to combat forced labor and child labor. It is also a valuable resource for researchers, advocacy organizations and companies wishing to carry out risk assessments and engage in due diligence on labor rights in their supply chains.

The countries on the List span every region of the world. The most common agricultural goods listed are sugarcane, cotton, coffee, tobacco, cattle, rice, and fish. In the manufacturing sector, bricks, garments, textiles, footwear, carpets, and fireworks appear most frequently. In mined or quarried goods, gold, coal and diamonds are most common.

ILAB published the initial TVPRA List in 2009 and updated it annually through 2014, following a set of procedural guidelines that were the product of an intensive public consultation process. ILAB now updates and publishes the List every other year, pursuant to changes in the law.

Procedural Guidelines

 

On December 27, 2007, ILAB's Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking published Procedural Guidelines for the development and maintenance of the List of Goods from countries produced by child labor or forced labor in violation of international standards.

Country/Area Good Exploitation Type
Turkey Sugar Beets Child Labor
Belize Sugarcane Child Labor
Bolivia Sugarcane

There are reports that children are forced to produce sugarcane in Bolivia. Based on the most recently available data from the ILO, it is estimated that almost a quarter of the migrants working in the sugarcane harvest are children under age 14, of which many are working in conditions of forced labor Many children work with their families under conditions of bonded labor. Entire families, including children, live in accommodations provided by the employer; this dependence on the employer increases their vulnerability to forced labor. The families receive little payment if any, and lodging and food expenses are deducted from their paychecks. Some children inherit the debt of their parents if their parents pass away or stop working, and remain bonded and able to be sold to a different employer. 

Child Labor, Forced Labor
Brazil Sugarcane

There is evidence that children ages 14 to 17 cultivate sugarcane in Brazil. Brazilian law prohibits all children under age 18 from producing sugarcane. Based on an analysis of the Government of Brazil’s 2015 National Household Survey, an estimated 5,503 child laborers cultivate sugarcane. Individuals, including children, who work in sugarcane production are exposed to long hours and high temperatures, and lack protective equipment. The release of this survey demonstrates the Government of Brazil’s commitment to addressing child labor and its acknowledgement that data collection is vital to the design and implementation of sound policies and programs. 

Child Labor, Forced Labor
Burma Sugarcane

There are reports that children are forced to work in the production of sugarcane in Burma. Forced child labor is found in the Thaton District, and particularly in areas near military camps. An NGO study documents villagers, including children, mobilized by the dozens each day from multiple villages to work during labor intensive times of the sugarcane production. The children are forced to cut trees and dig out the stumps to prepare the fields, plant the sugarcane, then mill and boil the sugarcane after it is harvested. They are not paid for their work. 

Child Labor, Forced Labor
Cambodia Sugarcane

There are reports that children ages 5 to 17 produce sugarcane in Cambodia. Child labor in the sugarcane sector occurs on both commercial plantations and smallholder farms. Children from families that have lost land through concessions to sugar companies are particularly vulnerable to exploitative labor on plantations. According to international organizations, NGOs, and media reports, child labor in the Cambodian sugarcane sector is a widespread concern, with numerous incidents reported across the country, including reports of hundreds of children cutting cane on plantations in the Koh Kong province. Children laboring in the sugarcane fields often work long hours under the hot sun and report difficulty breathing, headaches, and dizziness as a result. Child workers in this sector perform hazardous tasks such as carrying heavy bundles of sugarcane, using dangerous tools, and spraying toxic pesticides. Many children incur injuries on the job, including skin infections and cuts from sharp cane leaves or knives. 

Child Labor
Colombia Sugarcane Child Labor
Dominican Republic Sugarcane Child Labor, Forced Labor
El Salvador Sugarcane Child Labor
Guatemala Sugarcane Child Labor
India Sugarcane Child Labor
Kenya Sugarcane Child Labor
Mexico Sugarcane Child Labor
Pakistan Sugarcane Forced Labor
Paraguay Sugarcane Child Labor
Philippines Sugarcane Child Labor
Thailand Sugarcane Child Labor
Uganda Sugarcane Child Labor
Vietnam Sugarcane

There is evidence that children ages 5 to 17 grow sugarcane in Vietnam. The results of the Government of Vietnam’s National Child Labor Survey 2012, published in 2014, show that an estimated 28,303 child laborers are involved in growing sugarcane. Approximately 32.6 percent, or 9,227 of these child laborers are under 15 years old, which is the minimum age for employment in Vietnam. Of the estimated 28,303 child laborers who grow sugarcane, 3.9 percent are 5-11 years old, 28.7 percent are 12-14 years old, and 67.4 percent are 15-17 years old. The survey considers a child to be engaged in child labor if the child is working an excessive number of hours per week for his or her age, or if the child is engaged in work that is prohibited for underage employees according to national legislation. 

Child Labor
Zimbabwe Sugarcane

There are reports that children as young as age 9 produce sugarcane in Zimbabwe.  Multiple local media reports identify cases of children working on sugarcane farms, particularly on outgrower farms in Masvingo Province, which is the main area for sugarcane cultivation in Zimbabwe.  One source estimates that there are as many as 10,000 children working in the sector.  Children working on farms producing sugarcane perform tasks related to irrigation, the cutting of sugarcane, and guarding crops.  Children perform work at night and engage in hazardous activities, such as using machetes and chasing away wild animals.  Many child laborers working in sugarcane production do not attend school because of their work.

Child Labor
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Public Comments & Submissions

ILAB accepts public submissions for the TVPRA List on an ongoing basis, and reviews them as they are received. Submissions will continue to be taken into account as ILAB works to release periodic updates to the List. To submit information, please send an email to ILAB-TVPRA@dol.gov; fax to 202-693-4830; or mail to ILAB, U.S. Department of Labor, c/o OCFT Research and Policy Unit, 200 Constitution Ave NW, S-5315, Washington, DC 20210. View the list of submissions.


The List in Numbers

The List in Numbers

What You Can Do

What Can You Do to Help Address Child Labor and Forced Labor?