Sustainable Sugar Forum: Challenges and Solutions
Created in partnership with Bonsucro, the global platform for sugarcane, the forum brought NGO’s, suppliers, traders and end-users in the sugarcane supply chain to London to discuss the commercial opportunities of implementing sustainability and ethical initiatives, and the practicalities of how to make them successful. Diane Stevenson, Sugaright’s Director of Sustainability, reports in from the event…
The 2020 and beyond sustainable sugar sourcing commitments made by many global brands have definitely moved sustainability from theory to practice. With greater transparency and focus on measurable outcomes, the major issues have been identified and plans are being developed to address the big issues.
All for One and One for All
Producers can no longer fly under the radar and those that make significant improvements to meet sustainability schemes are the ones who will attract the big global buyers. Not only that, but one brand reported that they measure risk not by individual mills, but by entire countries. This logic argues for a national approach to addressing systemic issues and thus optimize global trade and price premiums.
Global standards are becoming more alike than different. In addition, brands keep coming up with their own, adding to the cost and inefficiency of the audit process. The Forum offered an opportunity for dialogue amongst the various schemes to see if a more holistic approach is possible. With the introduction of information technology tools to gather and synthesize data, these joint projects become more doable.
Creative Solutions to Child Labor
Instead of seeing children as the problem, one NGO sees them as the solution. “If you weren’t working on the fields, what would be the outcome?” “What would you be doing instead?” Answering the questions empowered the young people to brainstorm their own solutions, and to implement them with real buy-in.
For many participants, the joint learning and problem solving will continue at Bonsucro Week in Managua, Nicaragua from January 14-19.
Looking for sustainably sourced sugar? Sugaright has you covered with Fairtrade and Bonsucro certified sugar. Contact us to know more.