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Rapid Growth of Responsible Soy

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Rapid Growth of Responsible Soy

Rapid Growth of Responsible Soy
May 22
11:16 2012

Almost 300,000 tonnes of Round Table for Responsible Soy (RTRS) certified soy have been sold since June 2011 and demand is rising from across the world. At the start of its 7th Annual Conference (RT7), RTRS has set an annual target of five million tonnes of responsible soy to be produced and sold by 2015.

The first 85,000 tonnes of responsible soy were purchased a year ago and key users of soy including Unilever, FrieslandCampina, Arla Foods, Marks & Spencer and Waitrose, are prioritising responsibly sourced soy.

For the first time, the RTRS Annual Conference will be held outside of a major producer country, in London on 23-24 May 2012. Global stakeholders including producers, manufacturers, retailers, traders and key social and environmental organisations will come together to discuss how to secure growth for responsible soy and to develop the vision for RTRS soy beyond 2015.

Jaap Oskam, president of RTRS and chief procurement officer (CPO) of Nutreco, says: “Soy production has been held accountable for a number of issues including environmental degradation, social breakdown and worker exploitation. The RTRS was created as a global, multi-stakeholder initiative to tackle these issues and transform the soy industry, creating demand for responsible soy at all stages of the supply chain. Over the last year we have seen the first RTRS certified soy come on to the market and the time is right to hear the views from across the supply chain and build the future of the responsible soy industry.”

He continues: “Key purchasers of soy now want to use responsible soy exclusively and we have growing numbers of producers who are certified to produce RTRS soy and meet their demands. It is exciting to see how producers in Asia are recognising the business case for responsible soy and increasing their investment into the RTRS process.”

For the first time at a RTRS conference, global retailers including Ahold and Waitrose will be speaking at the event to discuss their commitment to responsible soy. Commodity traders Cefetra and Cargill will be discussing the future value of responsible soy while delegations from the Indian Soy Forum and the China Soybean Industry Association will look at utilising RTRS standards to improve soy agriculture and increase yields and profitability.

Also in attendance will be representatives from Marks & Spencer, Asda, Vion, Santander, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Carrefour, Arla, Nestle, WWF, Solidaridad, The Nature Conservancy, Conservation International, Grupo Maggi, European Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC), SLC Agrícola, Gebana, Argentinean Association of No-Till Producers (AAPRESID), Grupo Los Grobo and small scale producer representatives from China and India.

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