On 18-20 September, IDH and its partners started engaging cattle ranchers in the Araguaia Valley, northeast Mato Grosso state in Brazil, in the recently launched Sustainable Production of Calves program to increase sustainable beef production, conserve forest and improve livelihoods. The program, which also covers the Juruena Valley, aims to create a strong and fair beef production chain, and to build a viable economic and social model for the region.
The program, convened by IDH and led by Acrimat (Association of Mato Grosso Breeders), Carrefour Brasil Group and Carrefour Foundation, spans three municipalities in Araguaia: Ribeirão Cascalheira, Gaúcha do Norte and Paranatinga.
Over the next three years, the program will support a total of 300 smallholders in Araguaia Valley in adopting best management practices to intensify calf production and free up land for sustainable farming. This will help accelerate economic development and improve livelihoods in the region, where legal deforestation would be a choice but not the only option, without the need to cut down forest.
In the first three days of engagement, 118 cattle ranchers already registered to participate in the program.
Key program activities will include providing training on increasing efficiency, production and reducing carbon emissions; and supporting smallholders on land tenure and environmental regularization.
The program will also support producers through credits and investment.
The Sustainable Production of Calves program, which also covers the Juruena Valley, will support a total of 450 farmers in a strong and fair beef production chain, helping build a viable economic and social model for the region.
Activities proposed by the program have the potential to unlock approximately EUR 25 million in investments for the region, and to protect and restore more than 151,000 hectares (373,129 acres) of tropical forest.
The Carrefour Foundation, the international institution responsible for the Carrefour Group’s social investment, has already pledged to invest EUR 1,9 million to support the program. IDH will co-invest EUR 1,6 million.
The program is supported by Mato Grosso state government as part of its Produce, Conserve and Include (PCI) strategy.