Cargill Aqua Nutrition shares progress through collaboration in its 2019 sustainability report
Cargill supports the sustainable growth of the global aquaculture industry by enabling better seafood and helping farmers succeed with a focus on delivering animal health and welfare through feed and nutrition.
Cargill’s aqua nutrition business launched its annual sustainability report for 2019. According to Pilar Cruz, president of Cargill’s aqua nutrition business, the report – more than ever before – highlights the importance of collaboration in delivering transformational change.
“In order to understand and share awareness of the key issues, we talk to a broad range of stakeholders about the challenges and opportunities faced by the aquaculture industry in the different regions where we operate,” said Pilar Cruz, president of Cargill’s aqua nutrition business. “These discussions help us identify areas of interest and collaboration – including communication, measurement and reporting, and sustainable raw materials. Throughout the report, you’ll see our progress in these areas and examples of collaboration as we strive to fuel a global transformation through ocean stewardship.”
Highlights from the 2019 Cargill Aqua Nutrition Sustainability Report include:
- Supporting farmer livelihood around the globe. According to a February 2019 UN Special Report on the Right to Food, more than 80% of global aquaculture production is from small-to-medium-sized fish farmers. Cargill provides training, tools and services that help small farmers around the globe be successful. For example, in 2019 Cargill provided expert advice and support to more than 5,000 seafood farmers and workers in Thailand and Vietnam through local workshops and mobile lab services.
- Building bridges with communities. Cargill strives to be good neighbors in all communities where the business sources, operates and sells products. In Thailand, Cargill joined the Seafood Task Force to improve conditions in the fishmeal supply chain, and in April 2019 Cargill joined the Global Salmon Initiative (GSI) project Salmón Social in Chile to develop a code of practices to improve the social and environmental standards of its partners’ operations. The code was based on the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certification framework and the implementation of the Toolbox for a Responsible Relationship in Communities from WWF Chile, Rabobank and Consensus Building Institute.
- Working with shrimp farmers to detect diseases. Cargill’s SmartPCR is an innovative service that uses molecular tools to allow multiple, specific and quick detections (within five hours) of three-four pathogens. Diseases can impact farms very quickly and it is essential to have rapid and accurate diagnostics to start appropriate treatment as rapidly as possible. These outputs are used to adjust the feeding strategy with the appropriate SmartShield diets to help shrimp farmers obtain greater survival rates and better performance. This improves yield while reducing resource input needs – a great sustainability win.
- Collaborating for sustainable fisheries. Cargill’s 2025 goal is to source marine ingredients only from sustainably managed fisheries. Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs) have proved to be effective ways of bringing fishery stakeholders together to develop sustainable management procedures. Cargill continues to engage with FIPs in Peru and Thailand and encourage suppliers to form more FIPs. In 2019, 9.2% of Cargill’s forage fish came from FIPs highlighting Cargill's support of suppliers’ developments. Cargill’s 2020 focus is to build a coalition of stakeholders on NE Atlantic stocks of blue whiting, herring and Atlantic mackerel to help ensure that regulators set quotas within scientific recommendations for the first time in five years.
- Partnering in Norway for sustainable farming. Eide Fjordbruk farms Atlantic salmon in western Norway. In 2019, two sites fed EWOS Rapid Max produced 5,700 tons of fish from smolt in nine months in a display of market-leading growth and efficiency. Less sea lice impact reduced mortalities and biomass loss by almost two thirds, improving feed conversion by 8-12% compared to the average. Large feed savings reduced phosphorus use by 6 tons, protein consumption by 300 tons, and GHG emissions equivalent to taking about 170 cars off the road for a year. All of this was done at a cost-saving for the farmer, who needed less feed for his operations.
- Supporting growth in insect meal, sustainable ingredients. Waste from food systems causes a significant loss of nutrients. This loss is difficult to recapture for use in food again. We have partnered with InnovaFeed to use byproducts from a Cargill wheat processing mill to feed black soldier fly larvae – a great source of dietary protein. Production has scaled up enabling us to supply feed with insect meal to a major salmon farmer. In 2020, InnovaFeed will open its full scale 20,000 tons per year production facility in France and we look forward to supporting their growth. Cargill’s ambition is to have a wide range of sustainable raw materials available to choose from. The company works with suppliers back to the origin of the raw materials and engages with a range of stakeholders to set goals and achieve change.
According to Cruz, Cargill’s purpose is to nourish the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way – aquaculture plays an important role in fulfilling this purpose. Collaboration will continue to be a driving force for Cargill and the industry in addressing challenges together, and feeding the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way.
Download the report here.
Aquaculture producers worldwide hold one of the keys to meeting the increasing global demand for healthy seafood for a growing population. Cargill's sustainability strategy is geared towards helping farmers produce more and use less of the world’s finite resources, while staying competitive in a fast-changing marketplace.