Sofidel, Suzano Launch Pilot Project To Protect Biodiversity In Brazil's Amazon Region

By Dayeeta Das
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Sofidel, Suzano Launch Pilot Project To Protect Biodiversity In Brazil's Amazon Region

European tissue paper maker Sofidel and hardwood pulp producer Suzano have announced a three-year pilot project, Together we plant the future, aimed at environmental conservation and restoration and supporting socio-economic development in the Amazon region in Brazil.

IABS, the Brazilian Institute for Development and Sustainability, and Amazônia Onlus, an Italian non-profit, will help implement the project.

Sofidel's investment will scale up sustainable business models suitable for adoption by communities living alongside the rainforest.

In the first phase, the project will help alleviate poverty for around 1,400 family farmers through income-generation projects, including increasing agricultural productivity, beekeeping, and cultivating and commercialising native species, such as açaí berries and babassu coconuts.

'Delivering Positive Change'

Andrea Piazzolla, chief purchasing officer at Sofidel, said, "According to SDG 17, we are pleased to partner with Suzano, one of our biggest suppliers to make a difference. They share our same values, so it came natural to join forces to tackle both social and environmental issues in one of the poorest region in Brazil where our pulp comes from".


"With decades of experience delivering positive change, we believe Suzano is the right partner for us to work alongside on this pilot programme to bring concrete benefits and a positive impact on the ground. We hope our efforts will create a replicable and scalable model to help lifting communities out of poverty in a way that enhances the ecosystem".

The project will also fund the creation of a biodiversity corridor to promote connectivity within 2,210 square kilometres of rainforest, straddling the border between the Brazilian states of Maranhão and Pará.

The initiative will contribute to Suzano's long-term target to create biodiversity corridors that connect half a million hectares (5,000 square kilometres) of priority areas in Brazil's Amazon, Atlantic Forest and Cerrado biomes by 2030.

An 'Early Impact'

Paulo Jose de Souza Chaer Borges, managing director of Suzano EMEA, added, "Businesses can change the world for the better, but we can't do it alone. If we work together we can magnify our impact. This is why we are excited to partner with one of our biggest customers, Sofidel, to accelerate the promising early impact that we have seen in our social and environmental sustainability programmes.

"By financially empowering communities living in proximity to high ecological value areas, we can tackle poverty as a root cause of deforestation, at the same time as incentivising them to protect and restore ecosystems. We hope that this collaboration can prove the power of working together across the supply chain, to create positive change."

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