Building on past annul reports, the 2021 European Soy Monitor finds that soybean trade remained relatively unaffected. Brazil and the United States continue to be the world’s biggest producers and China by far the biggest soy consuming country. European soy production increased from 2,681,690 tonnes in 2020 to 2,712,900 tonnes in 2021.
The report also shows that 40% of the EU27+ soy consumption was certified under a FEFAC Soy Sourcing Guidelines (FEFAC SSG) compliant standard and that 24% was certified as deforestation and conversion-free.
The uptake FEFAC SSG compliant soy decreased in 2021 with 40.1% compared to 43.8% in 2020. The percentage certified conversion-free soy showed a slight decline during the same period.
As conversion of natural ecosystems in soy production countries remains high, it becomes more apparent that supply chain overarching efforts at the landscape level are required to reverse the concerning trend.
In addition to certification, a divergence of solutions can be observed in the soy market, ranging from landscape initiatives to clean supplier approaches to risk-based sourcing. All have a place in the transition to deforestation and conversion-free soy.
The report acknowledges that a diversity of solutions in the voluntary domain, in addition to mandatory solutions, is needed to address the risks in the soy supply chain. These solutions are for instance certification, moratoria, landscape approaches, clean supplier approaches, partnerships and carbon footprinting. These approaches are seen as complementary rather than competing and have the potential to make a significant impact on the transition to deforestation and conversion-free soy. While progress has been made, there are still challenges to overcome. The findings can serve as inspiration for further action and collaboration across the industry to drive positive change.