Supply chain deforestation pledges ‘unlikely to be met’

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The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) has warned that industry targets to become net zero in deforestation are unlikely to be met unless commodity producers in the supply chain manage of their deforestation risks.

In it report “Zeroing-in on Deforestation” CDP ranked 27 consumer goods producers which have the largest impact on deforestation, including that involved with the sourcing of palm oil, soy, timber, and cattle traders.

It found that the four sectors which are responsible for 80% of global deforestation, are not implementing practices to limit their destruction of the environment.

The report said that soy and cattle producers, which includes companies such as Glencore Agriculture, Minerva Foods and JBS – the largest meat processor in the world – fared very poorly.

Of the meat producers analysed, CDP found that there was almost no visibility regarding how and where cattle were reared, and only three major soy suppliers could fully map their supply chains, which stopped them from reducing the risk of sourcing from areas are already facing deforestation.

Carole Ferguson, Head of Investor Research at CDP, said: “What is clear from this research is that if FMCGs are relying on this part of the supply chain to meet their net zero deforestation ambitions – a lot more work needs to be done.

“Bold and urgent action from these producers is the critical first step in tackling deforestation throughout the supply chain.”

Although 68% of the total timber supply and 47% of land managed for the cultivation of palm oil assessed, claim to meet deforestation standards, CDP said that certification is “not enough”, and these companies should combine this with other initiative to help cut the impact they have on the environment.

Ling Sin Fai Lam, Lead Analyst on the report, said: “With countries like the UK looking to regulate supply chains further, the group of companies in this report will now be in the spotlight, and by addressing issues within their own supply chains, they can improve the sustainability of commodity production and tackle deforestation at the ground level.”

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