“In our work to meet growing global demand for soy, we must work with supply chain partners and stakeholders to preserve and protect ecologically valuable biomes, safeguarding the environment and natural resources that are crucial to secure agricultural production for the long-term. Collaboration throughout the value chain is key to sustainable soy production.”
Head of Grains & Oilseeds
In 2021, we continued to promote our Soy Sustainability Policy with soy suppliers, emphasizing our zero deforestation and conversion expectations in particular. Meanwhile, we further enhanced internal processes and systems for traceability and land use monitoring, expanded our verified conversion-free soy scheme and our overall portfolio of sustainable soy offers to meet increasing market demand.
In early 2022, we announced our zero deforestation and native vegetation conversion target by the end of 2025. Following thorough soy supply chain risk assessments in 2020, in 2021 we began developing our methodology to verify soy purchase volumes with zero deforestation and conversion, in consultation with key stakeholders. This methodology will be finalized in 2022 and applied to global soy sourcing, to establish our baseline for deforestation- and conversion-free soy.
In 2021, we further improved our internal systems and workflow to ensure supplier due diligence, while expanding traceability reporting on soy sourced from Cerrado municipalities. We also supported native vegetation conservation and launched new programs and collaborative initiatives supporting the production of sustainable and deforestation-free soy.
As a member of the Amazon Soy Moratorium Working Group (GTS – Grupo de Trabalho da Soja) and signature to the Green Grain Protocol of Pará State, in 2021, we continued to ensure all our Brazil soy supplies comply with the following minimum environmental and social criteria:
As a member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s Soft Commodities Forum (SCF), we expanded our traceability reporting from 25 to 61 focus municipalities that cover over 70% of total land conversion risks in Brazil’s Cerrado biome.
LDC’s most recent SCF reporting profile is accessible here.
In 2021, we conducted an in-depth analysis of all pre-financed soy farms in Brazil, to identify those with surplus native vegetation beyond legal conservation requirements. Findings showed a high concentration of native vegetation in this portfolio of supplying farms, which we will act to proactively preserve by engaging relevant soy suppliers.
We act through a number of initiatives, including our preferential financing line to incentivize soy expansion over existing open land, which we are working to expand in both the Cerrado and Gran Chaco biomes, as well as additional supplier financing and pricing incentives for continued conservation.
LDC’s Program for Sustainable Agriculture was launched in 2019 to support sustainable soy production and offer verified sustainable products to the market. In 2021, we revised this program to align with the latest Soy Sourcing Guidelines from the European Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC). So far, this program has been successfully implemented with a group of Brazil soy farmers. We initiated a new collaboration with technical partner Produzindo Certo, to strengthen technical assistance to farmers.
In 2021, we also successfully opened the European market for soybeans from LDC’s Conversion-free Soy Program, to offer third-party verified soy free from native vegetation conversion to the market. Combined with our Round Table on Responsible Soy (RTRS) flows, this expansion means we are well-positioned to meet increasing market demand for sustainable and deforestation-free Brazilian soy.
In 2021, we significantly increased the percentage of certified sustainable soy in Argentina, from 30% to 49% of our total soy sourcing volume. This brings us closer to our target of making our biggest crushing plant in General Lagos a dedicated facility for processing sustainable soy.
We also finalized Phase One of our pilot program with The Nature Conservancy in the Gran Chaco biome, conducting supplier interviews and analyses of land use dynamics. Building on these findings, we are exploring financial and commercial supplier incentive mechanisms with the potential to prevent further deforestation in this critical region.
In 2021, we added the US EPA Renewable Fuel Standard Program to our existing (2BSvs and ISCC-EU) certified sustainable biodiesel program portfolio, which requires physical segregation of certified soy from conventional soy. This has brought the total percentage of certified soy in Argentina to 49%, compared to 30% in 2020. All soybeans sourced under these three programs comply with the following requirements:
We also continued with our RTRS certification program in both countries, keeping in scope our Timbúes and General Lagos facilities in Argentina, and our CAIASA, Trociuk and Santa Maria facilities in Paraguay.
In addition to our longstanding membership of the RTRS, in Argentina and Paraguay we are an active participant in several other collaborative initiatives to promote sustainable and deforestation-free soy production, including:
Supported by the Association of Argentine Edible Oil Industries (CIARA) and Grain Exporters Association of Argentina (CEC), this discussion forum brings together the main originators, processors and traders of agricultural commodities in Argentina for sectoral collaboration toward forestry law compliance and deforestation-free supply chains. LDC is not only a full member, but also part of the technical group that defines specialized operational and technical issues.
During 2021, the forum was consolidated as a platform with clearly defined objectives and a vision for sectoral collaboration, positioning itself as both a tool and solution to meet the new demands of governments and international markets. Stakeholders across the value chain, including NGOs, universities and banks, have been added as members.
In 2021, we finalized our pilot project with TNC focused on Argentina´s Gran Chaco region, which interviewed suppliers and analyzed their business models, to develop various incentive mechanisms for producers to discourage deforestation in the biome, as a next step.
LDC is full member and active participant on PACN’s Oilseeds Roundtable, which works to certify Argentine export products and set a default greenhouse gas emission standard for Argentine soy cultivation. In 2021, we contributed inputs to the creation of a Carbon Balance Calculation Manual and Environmental Good Practices Manual for the oilseed sector.
As a member, we continued to support the certification of sustainable soy producers in 2021.
In 2022 and beyond, we will implement our new deforestation and conversion verification methodology developed in 2021, as a basis to further focus supplier engagement and due diligence in identified priority regions and explore innovative incentive schemes for conservation beyond legal requirements.
We will also continue to contribute to strategic initiatives in Latin America to advance sectoral transition toward sustainable soy production.
Expand preferential financing program in Brazil’s Cerrado & Argentina’s Gran Chaco biomes
Status: In progress
Establish our baseline and annual targets for deforestation- and conversion-free soy
100% traceability to farm for direct sourcing in high-risk regions as defined in our deforestation risk assessment regions
Deploy additional supplier incentive schemes in Latin America to support native vegetation conservation beyond legal requirements
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