20 September 2022

Proforest speaking about EU Deforestation Due Diligence at Climate Smart Food

Proforest speaking about EU Deforestation Due Diligence at Climate Smart Food

Food Navigator’s three-day online event, Climate Smart Food, will examine supply chain and agricultural emissions; nutrition security in an era of climate breakdown; and sustainable production and consumption. 

Proforest Deputy Director – Responsible Sourcing, Veronique Bovee, will be joining an expert panel on day two on ‘Policy measures to promote climate smart food’. 

“The EU’s Due Diligence requirements and the US FOREST Act aim to limit the environmental consequences of commodities in their supply chains. But debate rages about whether such efforts will have profound unintended consequences. And – when the environmental footprint of food closer to home continues to take its toll – is this a distraction from what could be achieved locally?” 

Like many who work in our industry, we welcome the legislation and the effort made by the European Commission to minimise the EU’s impact on forests and contribute to halting global deforestation. We think this is an opportunity to stop the import of deforestation-risk commodities and ensure we all play a part in halting and reversing deforestation across production landscapes everywhere. 

However, there is a risk that the current text of the legislation doesn't stop deforestation on the ground. It may serve to clean specific European agri-commodity supply chains, while diverting commodities associated with deforestation to other export markets. And while the regulation aims to ensure a clean supply of product to the EU market it may not stop deforestation overall, because most deforestation happens by actors before they supply into current supply chains. 

Proforest has published a discussion paper on the EU Deforestation Due Diligence with IDH, highlighting potential unintended consequences. The paper contains two key recommendations to encourage forest positive strategies: 

  1. Recognise and classify existing partnerships at jurisdictional level that have time-bound, credible plans to move to deforestation free as ‘transitional risk’ and for European governments and mid- or downstream companies to offer support to achieve this. 

  1. Vary the information collection requirements depending on the level of risk of the country or jurisdiction. 

Join us at Climate Smart Food to hear more. 

For more information: EU Regulation on Deforestation-Free Products - Proforest 

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