This week: The new food and beverage sector forced labour and human rights issues benchmark from Know the Chain is analysed by the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre’s Felicitas Weber. The meat sector in particular is in the spotlight, not least because of stresses from dealing with the pandemic’s challenges, while Tesco and Unilever score highest.

Plus: Oxfam highlights shortfalls in climate finance for emerging economies; potential food sector reforms post-pandemic; Ikea launches product buy-back scheme; and John Lewis Partnership brings net-zero target forward to 2035, in the news digest.

Host: Ian Welsh

Peter Stanbury and Ian Welsh discuss some of the initial insights from Innovation Forum’s action research group that’s examining the challenges facing smallholder farms and their communities. The sheer scale of the issues remains enormous – with vast scope for sharing lessons-learned between supply chains to make them more resilient. Stanbury argues the case for significantly more, smarter, collaboration to join up all the piecemeal initiatives and innovation across different sectors and jurisdictions.  

 

For more details about the research click here.

This week: Renata Nogueira, South America sustainability manager for Cargill, and Gonzalo La Cruz, managing director, Solidaridad South America, discuss how to drive forward more sustainable commodity supply chains in Paraguay, Colombia and Brazil, and some of the challenges for buyers with zero deforestation commitments.

Plus: IEA push for low-emission energy post pandemic; the greenhouse gas risks from nitrogen-based fertilisers; the future for nature-based solutions; Tesco goes 100% net-zero deforestation for all palm oil sourcing; and, trust in sustainability reporting on the increase, in the news digest.  

Host: Ian Welsh

Gotz Martin, head of sustainability implementation at Golden Agri-Resources, and Ian Welsh summarise some of the discussion points from a recent Innovation Forum workshop. They talk about the incentives that can work to help empower smallholder farmers, enabling them to increase farm incomes without clearing new land. Martin outlines some of the challenges around payments for ecosystem services, and why just paying farmers to preserve forests isn’t the answer.   

As apparel brands work to implement sustainability commitments across their supply chains, access to the right data is key. Collecting and utilising this data in an effective, efficient manner ensures brands can drive supply chain improvements, whilst promoting greater transparency, enabling broader industry collaboration and evidencing their hard work to consumers.

In this webinar, at a crucial moment for an industry grappling with the impact of COVID-19, we highlight practical examples and discuss the power of data in solving complex sustainable supply chain issues. We discuss the findings on this topic from a brand new report by the Economist Intelligence Unit in partnership with the US Cotton Trust Protocol and assess how the world’s leading brands are making progress.

Together with Dr Gary Adams, president of the US Cotton Trust Protocol, Jonathan Birdwell, regional head of public policy and thought leadership at the Economist Intelligence Unit, and Tara Luckman, co-founder and director at Flourish CSR, advisor to the US Cotton Trust Protocol and former head of sustainable sourcing at ASOS, we discuss:

  • The challenges facing brands in becoming more sustainable in an effort to meet SDG commitments.
  • The importance and potential of data to equip brands to overcome these key challenges.
  • The current availability of good quality data for the fashion industry, and the industry’s performance on its collection.
  • How do we move towards a more consistent model of data collection to provide more useful, actionable supply chain data?

Host: Ian Welsh, Innovation Forum

This webinar was sponsored by the US Cotton Trust Protocol. 

This week: Janina Grabs from ETH Zurich and Sophia Carodenuto from the University of Victoria talk about their research into how commodity trader companies are influencing and helping deliver brand supply chain commitments. They discuss how the relationship between brands, traders and growers is evolving.

Plus: Mars goes 100% zero-deforestation; more bad news for ocean floor plastic pollution; Aldi removes all single use plastic from produce aisles; investors accused of slow progress on deforestation despite commitments; and, new science-based targets framework for financial institutions, in the news roundup.

Host: Ian Welsh

Recorded during a Q+A session at Innovation Forum’s recent ethical trade and human rights conference, Elaine McKay, international affairs director at JTI, speaks with Toby Webb about the challenges around child labour in agricultural supply chains.

They discuss the need for brands to get to know their grower-suppliers, and how shorter supply chains and vertical integration can help. As McKay points out, any company that has agriculture commodities in its supply chain has child labour risks, and that is the only realistic starting point for addressing the challenge.

Here is a chance to listen to their session in full.  

This week: Some early pointers from Innovation Forum’s new smallholder farmer research group – involving Clinton Foundation, COLEACP, CottonConnect, GIZ, Golden Agri-Resources and Nestlé – from Dr Peter Stanbury. And, another chance to hear from Fairtrade America’s Stephanie Westhelle about working to ensure long-term sustainability in the west African cocoa sector.

Plus: Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Danone, Nestlé and others underline commitment to PET bottle deposit return schemes; new global rubber sector sustainability commitments; and, UK Modern Slavery Act tightens reporting requirements, with civil sanctions to come, in the news digest.  

Host: Ian Welsh

To ensure crop yields are optimised and inputs minimised, food brands and their suppliers need clear, unambiguous data. Analysing the right numbers can enable farmers to drive efficiencies and gives buyers and brands the transparency they need to ensure supply stability.

In this webinar, the participants discuss how to identify critical data points and ensure effective data collection, and assess how the right analysis can drive tangible benefits across the value chain.

Expert panel:

  • Kate Shaffner, global sustainable agriculture lead, Kellogg Company
  • Christian Bengtson, head of agriculture – EMEA, IBM Weather Business Solutions
  • Dirk Jan Kennes, global strategist farm inputs, Rabobank
  • Davide Ceper, vice-president, open farm and field data exchange, Yara

Hosted by Ian Welsh

This webinar was held in partnership with IBM, a sponsor of the recent Innovation Forum future of food conference series.

Dave MacLennan, CEO of Cargill, talks with Innovation Forum’s Toby Webb about the evolution of sustainability at the company and across the food and agriculture sector in the past few years.

Speaking at the start of the recent Innovation Forum future of food US conference, MacLennan highlights some of the Covid-19 pandemic’s impacts on commodity markets, and why he thinks that greater transparency will contribute to ever-more consumer interest in where food comes from and how it’s produced. They discuss evolving trust in brands and their suppliers, and how supply chain resilience has maintained food supply in very challenging circumstances.

Cargill was a sponsor of Innovation Forum’s recent future of food conference series.

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