10 Nov 2021
by James McCulloch

AIC delivers feed industry statement of support at launch of UK Soya Manifesto

2021-0202

On Tuesday 9th November 2021, UK industry leaders from 27 major businesses – all of the biggest UK grocery retailers (including Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Marks & Spencer and Iceland), some of the largest meat producers (including Avara Foods, 2 Sisters Food Group, Cranswick, Pilgrim’s UK), and food service companies and brands (such as Danone UK and Ireland, Nestle UK and Ireland, Nando’s, KFC UK and Ireland and McDonald’s UK and Ireland) united in signing the UK Soy Manifesto. This commits signatories to the following:

  1. Setting a robust deforestation- and conversion-free commitment – so no soy arriving in the UK is responsible for habitats being cleared for agriculture after January 2020.
  2. Asking direct suppliers to adopt the same commitment – and require that of their suppliers as well
  3. Writing Manifesto commitments into contracts and supporting suppliers to ensure targets are met
  4. Publicly sharing details of their progress
  5. Support improved reporting, in order to check that soy coming into the UK is not responsible for deforestation or destruction of other ecosystems.

The Agricultural Industries Confederation (AIC), as representative of the UK livestock animal feed supply chain, supports the UK Soya Manifesto in its aim to accelerate the ongoing transition to sustainable soy production and consumption.

The UK livestock animal feed supply chain is also fully supportive of the principle, set out in the Manifesto, of working together across supply chains, including farmers in producing countries, to develop joined up, pragmatic implementation plans, building on existing industry activity and best practice. Whilst recognising that significant progress has been made, we agree that this type of coordinated action must be scaled-up to support global efforts in reaching net zero emissions globally, halting biodiversity loss, and providing sustainable livelihoods. 

The UK livestock animal feed supply chain welcomes the commitment to integrate Manifesto commitments within direct supplier commercial contractual requirements, and support compliance. The feed industry and it’s suppliers have regularly called for clear and consistent demand signals from customers, in the UK as well as in the EU. These signals, combined with a commitment to support those demands within commercial contracts, will enable the industry to further facilitate the delivery of deforestation and conversion free soya.

The deforestation and conversion free soya supply schemes, independently benchmarked under the FEFAC soy sourcing guidelines, already exist in order to deliver the same goal as the Manifesto.

However, there is a need for further discussion and agreement, through the UK Roundtable on Responsible Soya and other European soya initiatives, on how these schemes are deployed and the methodologies and processes used. Any outcome will be in addition to the anticipated requirements of UK Due Diligence Legislation.

AIC reiterates its support for the Manifesto and commits to playing its part in helping to deliver the Manifesto aims. We remain convinced that collaboration between the market, Government and other stakeholders can ensure the protection of this vital global resource.

Full details on the UK Manifesto can be found at the following link:

The Manifesto | The UK Soy Manifesto

Related topics

Authors

James McCulloch

James McCulloch

Sector Head of Animal Feed, AIC

Email:
[email protected]
Phone:
01733 385253

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