23 Jan 2017 With the header: “IDH stops deforestation” Dutch magazine P+ introduced its latest issue, featuring the soy MoU, co-organized by IDH. Soy Director Lucian Peppelenbos: “It is good to be optimistic and ambitious. But clearly this MoU alone will not stop deforestation. But it IS a big step towards mainstream responsible soy and its part of our Mato Grosso landscape strategy
Below an English summary of the Dutch article (which is more realistic than the header).
Large Brazilian soy producers and European soy-purchasers have signed a joint action plan for the production and trade of responsible soy. The Memorandum of understanding (MoU) on responsible soy was signed on 19 January in Lisbon last week.
The agreement between Aprosoja (Organization of soy producers in Mato Grosso), Abiove (Brazilian soy traders), FEFAC, Fediol (European vegetable oil and protein industry) and IDH supports Brazilian Forest Code and Mato Grosso’s Produce, Conserve and Include (PCI) Plan: it aims to protect natural habitats by promoting sustainable farming methods and restoring degraded agricultural land. The PCI aims to restore 6 million hectares of degraded pasture, as well as sustainably manage another 6 million hectares of native forest.
During the international press conference on the internet this week, the Presidents of Abiove and Aprosoja denied any connection between the cultivation of soy and deforestation. According to President Endrigo Dalcin of Aprosoja, deforestation is under control and its members fully support the forest legislation. He blamed small settlers, who burn a piece of forest for their cultivation, for the deforestation. “That’s pretty black and white,” says Daan de Wit of IDH. “There are still a lot of soy farmers that do not comply with the legal obligation to leave a percentage of forest on their land. What is different now is that for the first time buyers and producers together agree on what needs to be done, and on what they want to achieve together. In other words, the market is going to appreciate the efforts of Brazil and accelerate compliance to the Forest Code. ”
Is tthis agreement is the big break in the direction of responsible soy? De Wit: “Of course we hope so. We think that by intensifying cattle production and mainstreaming responsible soy production, we have a good shot at solving quite some of the deforestation issues . This is the first step in that direction. “