Marfrig’s production chain to be free of deforestation within ten years

  • Company to invest over 82 million Euro in sustainability actions by 2030
  • The main objective is to continue production while protecting Brazilian biomes, especially the Amazon
  • The program was designed in partnership with IDH and provides for sustainable livestock production, full traceability from birth to slaughter and inclusion of producers

Marfrig, one of the global leaders in the beef market and the world’s largest hamburger producer, today launched the Marfrig Verde+ Plan, which aims to ensure that 100% of the company’s production chain is sustainable and deforestation-free within ten years. The plan was presented to investors, customers, ranchers and environmentalists in Brazil and abroad during an online event on 23 July 2020, which brought together the company’s leading executives, representatives of the financial market and civil society. The plan was developed in partnership with IDH – the Sustainable Trade Initiative. Over the next ten years, Marfrig will invest 500 million reais (approx. 82.5 million Euro) in sustainability actions.

“We are absolutely convinced the future will be nothing but promising for those who embrace sustainability”, says Marcos Molina dos Santos, founder and chairman of the Board of Directors of Marfrig. “We are pioneers in our sector and, once again, we want to encourage the entire chain to make a commitment to sustainable development and to protecting our forests.”

The plan is based on the Produce, Conserve, Include (PCI) approach and goes beyond commercial relationships to link more deeply with the whole supply chain, thereby improving livelihoods and mitigating the risk of deforestation. This happens through simultaneous and integrated actions involving networking, partnerships with livestock farmers’ associations, civil society organizations and academia, as well as cooperation with the Public Ministry. Through publicly accessible platforms, stakeholders and the wider society will be able to monitor and verify the pace at which goals are achieved.

By 2022, all of Marfrig’s systems will be adapted to control the supply chain and mitigate risks. Later this year, the company will launch the Risk Mitigation Map for Indirect Suppliers, a tool that juxtaposes maps of native vegetation with others of livestock production. This will make it possible to determine areas of greater or lesser risk of suppression of biodiversity. Furthermore, a satellite geo-monitoring system, which is currently in use for the Amazon, will be adapted to monitor the Cerrado biome as well by the end of 2020.

Between 2022 and 2025, Marfrig will lead the reintegration program for excluded producers if they can meet the company’s sustainability criteria. A technical assistance, intensification and restoration program will also be put in place involving improvement of pastures, animal nutrition and genetic improvement. Support for the IDH-led Sustainable Production of Calves Program in Mato Grosso will contribute to building these technical assistance models. Additionally, Marfrig and IDH are working with financial institutions to develop loans to support ranchers in financing the changes needed to make their production more sustainable.

100% traceability of production chains in the Amazon

By 2025, the goal is to achieve full traceability of Marfrig’s supply chain in the Amazon. In the next ten years, the company will do the same with the Cerrado and other biomes, thus achieving zero deforestation by 2030.

For the program to gain scale and speed, Marfrig will cooperate with the other members of the production chain: producers, government, companies in the sector, civil society, customers, investors and banks.

“We believe that with a long-term program for the livestock value chain in Brazil, and with the right technical support such as genetic solutions and accessible credit, sustainable and inclusive calf-raising can be competitive and can improve farmers’ livelihoods,” says Daniela Mariuzzo, Executive Director for IDH Brazil. “To date, we have seen an increase in productivity, income has been generated for families, and incentives to convert areas of native vegetarian into pastureland have been minimized.”