ISEAL organisations join up for first African regional meeting

19th September 2019

Africa has a huge potential for sustainability improvements, and many ISEAL members are working on the continent promoting sustainable practices in a diverse range of areas; agriculture and processing, the development of golf courses, fishing, the management of water, to name a few. In addition, ISEAL members are encouraging African companies and brands to collaborate with them to achieve improved sustainability profiles.

ISEAL members are, however, limited in terms of resources in Africa, which can be a barrier to working on a large scale. Boudewijn Goossens, the Bonsucro Regional Director for Africa & Middle East, felt it was time to bring all of ISEAL members based in Africa together and discuss how they can work together to become more aligned and effective.

On 17 and 18 September 2019, eight ISEAL members (Alliance for Water Stewardship, Fairtrade, GEO Foundation, MSC, Rainforest Alliance, RSB, RSPO and Bonsucro) and support organisations WWF and Solidaridad met in Cape Town to get to know each other and develop a shared agenda. The group agreed having two face-to-face meetings and two calls per year while working on the common agenda. BCI, FSC and LEAF were unable to attend this time, but are keen to participate.

This event was supported by the ISEAL Innovation Fund, funded by SECO.

To find out more about this initiative, please contact Boudewijn.

Bonsucro & Renovabio: Exploring synergies and advancing GHG reduction in Brazil

Project partners: Earth innovation Institute and Agroicone
Project length: 12 months Budget: $22,347,79
Supporting the Sustainable Development Goals:

RenovaBio is a Brazilian biofuel policy designed to decrease Brazil’s greenhouse gas emissions by 10% by 2029 [compared to 2018], in line with the Paris Agreement on climate change. It aims to do this by incentivising fuel distributors to blend more biofuels into their products. RenovaBio has established a certification scheme for biofuel, towards which Brazilian sugarcane mills are working, that will enable them to trade decarbonisation credits on the Brazilian stock exchange.

Bonsucro continuously seeks to grow awareness and adoption of its standard. In Brazil, this can be achieved by aligning its framework with RenovaBio to optimise costs and time for mills. In 2019, Bonsucro received a grant of US $22,000 from the Earth Innovation Institute to provide a common understanding of how RenovaBio works and how other regions might benefit from this approach.

Bonsucro addressed the topic at Bonsucro Global Week in Bangkok in March 2019, and through three stakeholder forums in Brazil. The Bonsucro team also commissioned a technical comparison study, which enabled the organisation to understand how best to align with RenovaBio’s requirements.

The study has been shared with key stakeholders in Brazil and the project is now complete. Bonsucro is working to incorporate the study’s findings and recommendations through its ongoing Production Standard Revision process.

By aligning opportunities of optimisation, joint work and integration with the Brazilian Government and reflecting it in the Bonsucro Standard, Bonsucro can help to ensure that more producers adopt sustainability standards like Bonsucro.