Some sixty investors, suppliers and retail groups have called on the Brazilian government to maintain the 2006 Amazon Soy Moratorium, including many big names in the industry. This treaty prohibits the trade in soy beans grown on newly-cultivated land in the Amazon.
The open letter is an initiative by FAIRR, an investor initiative focused on sustainability and signed by major retailers such as Ahold Delhaize, Carrefour, Ikea, Lidl, Marks & Spencer, Metro, Rewe, Tesco and Waitrose. The signatories point to the fact that soy production in the Amazon has quadrupled since the introduction of the ASM. The protection of the area and higher agricultural productivity therefore goes hand in hand, they argue.
However, the deforestation caused by other causes has not been stopped, particularly livestock farming in the area. This makes it all the more important that the ASM is maintained, even if there are calls to abolish it, the letter says. “Our position is clear: we want to be able to continue to source from, or invest in, the Brazilian soy industry but if the ASM is not maintained, this will risk our business with Brazilian soy."
“Today, there is enough existing agricultural land to continue to increase soy production in the Amazon by an additional 600 % compared to current figures. We look forward to supporting Brazilian partners to continue their leadership and show that economic development and environmental protection can go hand in hand", concludes the letter in an optimistic tone.