Ruud Tijssens, group director of public and cooperative affairs at Royal Agrifirm Group said, "Our commitment is, on the one hand, to have guarantees that the soy we process in animal feed is completely deforestation-free.
"On the other hand, we also want to continue to exert a positive influence in areas at risk of deforestation. We choose not to withdraw from high-risk areas, but rather to stimulate demand for deforestation- and conversion-free soy in these areas."
Soy Procurement Protocol
The procurement protocol includes a definition of deforestation- and land conversion-free soy; and a study of the risk of deforestation and land conversion in Canada, the US, Paraguay and the states of Brazil.
For the joint pilot with FrieslandCampina, Agrifirm purchases soy in one or more of these countries and states and different verification requirements are imposed on the supply chain based on the risk profile of the country or state.
Suppliers of soy from regions with a high risk of deforestation and land conversion are required to meet more extensive verification requirements than soy suppliers from regions with a low risk of deforestation and land conversion.
Tijssens added, "As far as we are concerned, the purchase of genuinely deforestation- and conversion-free soy will become standard as soon as possible. The purchasing protocol provides clear guidelines, and the first experiences show that it is possible to set up a deforestation- and conversion-free soy chain to Europe."
He added that since March 2022, Agrifirm has supplied over 20,000 tonnes of guaranteed deforestation-free soy to FrieslandCampina's dairy farmers.
According to the protocol, RTRS certification of physical soy is one of the options for purchasing deforestation-free and conversion-free soy, as is soy that complies with certification schemes that meet the FEFAC Soy Sourcing Guidelines and conversion-free criterion no. 34.