Press release – IDH and Conservation International Partner to Support Green COVID-19 Recovery and Sustainable Supply Chains

IDH and Conservation International Partner to Support Green COVID-19 Recovery and Sustainable Supply Chains

Arlington, VA (June 17, 2020) – Today, Conservation International and IDH – The Sustainable Trade Initiative signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to expand their joint commitment to build sustainable supply chains and prioritize the long-term well-being of humanity.

“The link between planetary and human health has never been clearer. Government recovery plans designed to rebound from COVID-19 are an opportunity to implement solutions that rebuild lives, spur economic activity and accelerate the transition to a more resilient and sustainable society – to ‘build back better’. That is the opportunity we want to seize with this co-operation,” said Herbert Lust, Vice President and Managing Director of Conservation International Europe.

The MOU aims to benefit livelihoods – especially those of smallholder farmers – and the environment by increasing demand for sustainable commodities, improving access to financing and driving innovative, large-scale market efforts to transition society to practices that prioritize nature. These efforts aim to encourage sustainable development in countries such as Liberia, Indonesia and Brazil.

Conservation International and IDH have agreed to make resilient and green COVID-19 recovery efforts an early priority of the agreement.

“A resilient future requires sustainable livelihoods that benefit both nature and people. We have to change our relationship with nature and make it an integral part of our future development. A healthy planet means a healthy economy,” said Dr. M. Sanjayan, CEO of Conservation International. “It will take collaboration to rebuild following the disastrous effects of COVID-19. Dedicated to global cooperation and passionate about sustainability, IDH is a natural and incredibly valuable partner to work together with hand-in-hand on this journey.”

“A green recovery needs successful sustainability pilots around the world to scale up fast,” said Joost Oorthuizen, CEO of IDH, the Sustainable Trade Initiative. “As sustainable production increases, forest protection has to match it. With the nature protection specialists at Conservation International, we can make this happen at the scale that’s needed.”

Conservation International and IDH will build on their existing partnership which has been focused on creating sustainable and value-based supply chains in the coffee and palm oil industries. The new six-year MOU will help mobilize resources and bring together corporations, governments, and nonprofits in support of similar work in countries and economies dependent on commodity production.

“We have seen encouraging results from our sustainable supply chain work in Indonesia, Brazil and Liberia,” said Daan Wensing, Program Director for Sustainable Landscapes at IDH. “By combining more sustainable production, nature protection and community development, we can create lasting change.”

Conservation International will bring scientific expertise, technical support and first-hand experience working with indigenous peoples and local communities to the partnership. IDH will contribute its PPI (Production, Protection, Inclusion) approach, experience in convening public-private partnerships and expertise in sustainable production of agri-commodities.

To read the full press release please see below.