IDH and Bayer sign partnership to promote sustainable territorial development in Brazil and Colombia

The Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and Bayer have just signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at supporting sustainable territorial development in Brazil and Colombia. The focus of the cooperation is to support and strengthen IDH’s sustainable landscape approach, the pillars of which are Production, Preservation and Inclusion (PPI), seeking to foster sustainable large-scale commodity production, food security, the inclusion of small farmers, conservation of natural resources and carbon-related mechanisms.

In Mato Grosso, the first result of this partnership is the adherence to the Sorriso PCI Compact, making Bayer a member of the Compact’s local committee and thereby supporting the achievement of the goals established in April 2019. In Sorriso, IDH co-finances the program Cultivando Vida Sustentável, implemented by Clube Amigos da Terra (CAT) Sorriso, which includes support for responsible soybean farming, the use of areas already open in the region for grain production, the restoration of the Permanent Preservation Areas and the socio-economic inclusion of family farmers, by providing technical assistance for the production of fruits, vegetables, milk and honey.

Launch of the Cultivando Vida Sustentável Programa, in Sorriso-MT, on March 2020

For IDH, this partnership represents a major step for the consolidation of a sustainable territorial development model that advocates balance among the production of commodities, the preservation of natural resources and the inclusion of family farming and traditional communities. “We believe that companies’ engagement in promoting sustainability through commitments and/or investments in the supply chain is key for the success of Verified Sourcing Areas (VSA). A new model that links sustainable landscapes to markets and final buyers. The company’s engagement can make this model scale up and bring about systemic changes. IDH is developing this strategy in several countries where it operates”, says Joost Oorthuizen, global director of the IDH.

Through the agreement, Bayer and IDH also set the objective of collaborating in the implementation of strategies for sustainable soybean farming, food security, the inclusion of small farmers, conservation of natural resources and the carbon market. “The pillars of the PCI project are in line with our strategic goals as a company and will be the pillars that will drive sustainable development in the regions”, explains Rodrigo Santos, president of Bayer’s agricultural division for Latin America.

The partnership was also celebrated by the Mayor of Sorriso, Ari Lafin, who considers Bayer’s support for the local PCI Compact an important achievement for the implementation of the strategy. “The adhesion of companies, mainly of such size, shows the credibility and praises the work developed with the entities in the PCI. Success is the sum of these efforts, with unity and dialogue, in search of development with social inclusion and preservation ”, said Lafin.

The partnership between the government of Mato Grosso and IDH was formalized in 2016. Since then, processes have been established to support the implementation of the Produce, Preserve and Include (PCI) Strategy, the structuring of the PCI Institute, the establishment of the Regional Compacts of Vale do Juruena, Sorriso and Barra do Garças, the state’s environmental management, and for co-financing projects with the private sector, totaling investments of around 9 million euros by 2021.

In Colombia, the purpose of the cooperation is to facilitate the construction of the PPI Compacts.