The Soft Commodities Forum (SCF) members, a global platform for leading soft commodities companies convened by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), have committed to a common framework for reporting and monitoring progress on transparent and traceable supply chains for soy in Brazil’s Cerrado region.
The Cerrado region of Brazil plays a significant role globally for both people and nature, including climate change mitigation, biodiversity, fresh water systems, and as an economic engine for local communities as a production region for exported agricultural commodities. However, the extent and pace of native vegetation loss resulting from cattle and soy expansion in the Cerrado poses a significant threat to these social, environmental and economic values.
SCF consists of founding members Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Bunge and Cargill. SCF member companies commit to act on supporting transparent and traceable soy supply chains in Brazil. Each member company will report individually the percentage of soy they each source in the Cerrado from the total Brazilian volume every six months starting with 2018 harvest data. Together, the SCF members will closely monitor municipalities with the highest risk of conversion of native vegetation to soy, based on GTC information. Sourcing in these municipalities will be reported in percentages of direct purchase, from farmers, and indirect purchase, from parties like aggregators, cooperatives and third parties. The first report will be issued in June 2019. The process will be supported by Proforest, a leading non-profit group that supports companies, governments and other organizations in implementing their commitments to the responsible production and sourcing of agricultural commodities and forest products. Subsequent reporting will provide information on specific actions being taken to improve direct engagement with farmers to address risks in the municipalities.
“Cargill is proud to join other leaders in the industry to support actions that help Brazilian farmers protect forests, preserve natural resources and maintain their livelihoods”, states David MacLennan, Cargill chairman and CEO. “Today’s announcement brings the industry together around shared goals and accountability to ensure continued progress against our sustainability commitments.” Cargill also announces that the company took bold steps to advance its commitment to protect forests and promote rural agricultural development across its supply chains, with the launch of a South America Sustainable Soy Policy, a Human Rights Commitment and an updated Forest Policy.
“For ADM, sustainable practices and a focus on environmental responsibility are integral to the work we do every day”, states ADM Chairman and CEO, Juan Luciano. “Since we first made our Commitment to No Deforestation in 2015, we’ve made significant progress in achieving transparency in our own supply chains, and in working with our industry counterparts so that we are all advancing these important goals. The framework and standards we’ve agreed upon as part of the Soft Commodities Forum is a critical step forward in our collective efforts to preserve and protect the environment and the people of the Brazilian Cerrado biome.”
“Transparency and data improve trust and facilitate problem solving. Today’s commitment will generate more of both”, states Greg Heckman, Acting CEO, Bunge Limited. “It is an important step by industry leaders that will help optimize agricultural sustainability in a vital region.”