PARIS — A coalition of 20 global retailers and manufacturers, including PepsiCo, Inc., Nestle SA and Mondelez International, on Sept. 23 published its first annual report detailing progress in reducing deforestation.
The Consumer Goods Forum’s Forest Positive Coalition of Action, which formed last year, keeps performance indicators for the four commodities of palm oil; soy; paper, pulp and fiber-based packaging; and beef.
The world is losing 88,000 square kilometers of forest every year, which equates to losing an area the size of London every week, said Wai-Chan Chan, managing director of the Consumer Goods Forum, a global industry network that encourages the adoption of practices and standards that serves the consumer goods industry.
“Our planet is on the brink of irreversible climate change, and stopping commodity-driven deforestation is critical to addressing the climate crisis and preserving biodiversity, as well as protecting forest-based communities around the world,” he said. “Collaboration and openness are both vital in combating deforestation, and we must push ourselves to all continue to do much more to catalyze change.”
The coalition in its first year established dialogue with upstream palm oil and soybean suppliers through the Palm Oil Collaboration and the Soft Commodities Forum, two associations for the palm oil and soy sectors, respectively. Coalition members also engaged with 20 meatpacking companies that combined operate and source from more than 100 meatpacking plants in the Brazilian Amazon and Cerrado biomes.
As part of a landscape engagement strategy, 16 coalition members collectively are investing at least $9 million per year in landscape initiatives in the palm oil, soy, fiber-based packaging and beef sectors. Of the 16 companies who consider paper, pulp and fiber-based packaging a material commodity, over 80% have policies in place to guide forest-positive sourcing of paper, plant and fiber-based packaging.
Alexandre Bompard, chief executive officer of Carrefour, and Grant F. Reid, CEO of Mars, Inc., co-sponsor the Forest Positive Coalition of Action on the board of the Consumer Goods Forum. Co-chairs for the coalition are Christine Montenegro McGrath, vice president and chief global impact, sustainability at Mondelez International, and Bertrand Swiderski, chief sustainability officer, Carrefour.
Other member companies include Danone SA, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt and Unilever. The coalition members each year will report on progress in areas such as time-bound action plans to implement forest-positive procurement policies; the percentage of commodity supply from areas with high risks for deforestation, land conversion and exploitation; and the performance of suppliers and traders against the coalition’s Forest Positive Asks, which are expectations that coalition members seek to meet and share with supply chain partners.