Public consultation on Bonsucro Production Standard revision begins

14th May 2020

The Bonsucro Production Standard is at the heart of everything Bonsucro does. It sets out a definition of what sustainable sugarcane production should look like and provides a comprehensive metric tool for sustainable farming and milling. Bonsucro wants to maximise the impact that the Standard has on the future of the sector and add value for the producers who implement it and so has undertaken a revision of the Standard.

The Standard was created in 2011 and only received minor adjustments in 2014. However, in this time, sustainability and the tools to measure it, have significantly advanced. Bonsucro has gained greater understanding of the issues within the sugarcane production and processing.

Over the years, the team has closely monitored the feedback on the Standard and related documents. Bonsucro under the lead of an international group of 15 experts, has used all the analysis and feedback to carefully propose adaptation the Standard to ensure that it is as robust, credible, and comprehensive as possible.

Next week, Bonsucro will start the public consultation on the proposed changes to the Production Standard. The consultation runs from 18 May to 31 July and members, non-members and all interested stakeholders are invited to submit their feedback. The more input gained, the more robust the Standard will be.

Areas for feedback

Based on return of experience, certification of producers and numerous feedback collected since the launch of the previous version, Bonsucro has identified areas of content in the Standard that could be improved. For example, on the social side, stakeholders felt that the Standard and guidance could set stronger requirements in relation to forms of forced labour. Stakeholders also identified living conditions and the need for a living wage for workers as gaps that the Standard should address. On the environmental side, the stakeholders identified water management, particularly in water stressed areas, as an area to be strengthened alongside deforestation commitments and increasing climate resilience through greenhouse gases emission reduction and increasing soil health.

Bonsucro and the Standard Revision working group have examined how the structure and design of the Standard itself affects the outcomes it wants to achieve. The revision looks at how to identify risks and issues that exist outside the parameters of certification. And, how continuous improvement can be incentivised while ensuring that minimum standards are not diluted.

How to participate

On 18 May, a summary of the proposed changes will be available on the Bonsucro website. From 18 May until 31 July Bonsucro seeks your feedback via an online survey. The team will host a series of webinars in English, Spanish and Portuguese to inform stakeholders on the proposed changes. The webinars are split into five phases, each of which cover different themes to allow participation according to expertise and interest.

The survey is open to both members and non-members – do share it with your network. The Standard consultation documents will be available throughout the whole period and can be accessed at any time. Bonsucro encourages stakeholders to attend some of the dedicated webinars to have a better understanding of each area before submitting feedback.

Phase 1: Will introduce the Standard Revision and public consultation process – it will outline where the find the documents, how to provide feedback and highlight all the upcoming consultation activities.

Sign up

English, Monday 18 May 2PM BST register here.

English, Tuesday 19 May 8AM BST register here.

Español, miercoles 20 de mayo 3PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Español, miercoles 20 de mayo 6PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Português, quinta-feira, 21 de maio, 11AM BRT (Horário de Brasília) registre-se aqui.

 

Phase 2: Will inform stakeholders on the changes to the structure of the Standard and the introduction of a new management principle and what these changes aim to achieve.

Sign up

English, Tuesday 26 May 8AM BST register here.

English, Wednesday 27 May 2PM BST register here.

Español, miercoles 27 de mayo 3PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Español, miercoles 27 de mayo 6PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Português, quinta-feira, 28 de maio, 11AM BRT (Horário de Brasília) registre-se aqui.

Phase 3: Will address the changes to social indicators, in particular indicators on living wage and the introduction on indicators on abuse/harassment.

Sign up

English, Monday 8 June 2PM BST register here.

English, Tuesday 9 June 8AM BST register here.

Español, miercoles 10 de junio 3PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Español, miercoles 10 de junio 6PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Português, segunda-feira, 15 de junho, 11AM BRT (Horário de Brasília) registre-se aqui.

 

Phase 4: Will look at health and safety indicators and focus on changes that relate to health and safety risk assessments, working hours, housing for workers and sanitation.

Sign up

English, Monday 22 June 2PM BST register here.

English, Tuesday 23 June 8AM BST register here.

Español, miercoles 24 de junio 3PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Español, miercoles 24 de junio 6PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Português, quinta-feira 25 de junho 11AM BRT (Horário de Brasília) registre-se aqui.

 

Phase 5: Will examine the agro-technical/environmental indicators and will particularly focus on changes to protecting sensitive ecosystems and new requirements around environmental management plans.

Sign up

English, Monday 13 July 2PM BST register here.

English, Tuesday 14 July 8AM BST register here.

Español, miercoles 15 de julio 3PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Español, miercoles 15 de julio 6PM BST resgistrate aqui.

Português, quinta-feira, 16 de julho, 11AM BRT (Horário de Brasília) registre-se aqui.

The public consultation on the revised Production Standard is a critical step in the development of the organisation for the positive impact it would bring to the sugarcane sector and its stakeholders. Bonsucro and the working group thank you in advance for your support and participation.

If you have any questions about the Standard revision or the public consultation, please contact Nahuel Tuñón, Standards Manager.

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.