A Message from Diane Stevenson, Chair of the Bonsucro Members’ Council

14th February 2018

Diane Stevenson, Chair of the Bonsucro Members Council, sends out a message to members, stakeholders, sponsors, and all participants of Bonscuro Week 2018 to thank for their participation in learning, sharing and connecting in our annual flagship event that occurred last January in Managua, Nicaragua.

Dear Members and Stakeholders,

Bonsucro Week 2018 in Nicaragua was a phenomenal success.  For three days in Managua, members from all five continents and all membership groups came together to learn best practices, share challenges and solutions and to connect with one another.  End-users communicated their commitment to buying from mills that demonstrate sustainable practices; and producers came in force to learn from each other. These three days were followed by field visits to San Antonio and Monte Rosa mills where we saw much of what we learned put into practice.  The Latin hospitality was, of course, wonderful, with delicious food and music creating a memorable experience accompanied by our favourite sugarcane by-product, high-quality rum Flor de Caña!

The mills showcased why Bonsucro exists: the global platform fostering change in the sugarcane sector. Using the Bonsucro Standard indicators as a guide, the mills worked with other stakeholders to make the necessary changes to achieve certification.  There was a great focus on the concern for the health and safety of the workers, research being done to improve the bioavailability of nutrients for the soil, and the use of new technology. 

The informal theme for the week was “This is Your Bonsucro”.  Attendees were encouraged to take all that they learned and return home to leverage the power of the Bonsucro network with their new connections. 

On behalf of the membership, my sincere gratitude to Comite Nacional de Productores de Azúcar Nicaragua (CNPA), our platinum sponsor and partner for the week, and its member mills for their extraordinary hospitality. Thanks as well to our gold sponsor, Solidaridad, and our bronze sponsors, ACT Commodities, ED&F Man and SupplyShift; without them, this event would not have been possible. 

Finally, thanks to all who have travelled both near and far to attend the event and share your passion for Bonsucro.

I am already looking forward to next year!

Warm regards,

Diane Stevenson

Chair, Bonsucro Members Council

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.