Several environmental and social regulations have recently been developed, and companies are looking to deal with the upcoming changes.
While regulations are important in promoting responsible sourcing practices, they are only a first step towards meaningful progress. Their long-term effectiveness remains uncertain, highlighting the need for deeper understanding and effective implementation.
At Earthworm Foundation, we believe that companies should strive to do more than understand regulations and seek to implement them for the sake of compliance. There is innate value in going beyond simple implementation and looking beyond, striving to implement regulatory changes that drive supply chain transformation.
"We are living in an era of an increasing number of legal requirements and risks that have to be factored in by any corporation".
PODCAST: Wayne Jordash KC is the Global Rights Compliance Foundation Director and a world-leading lawyer specialising in international human rights and humanitarian law, particularly in high-risk and conflict-affected areas. Wayne outlines the four steps companies can follow in this podcast to stay on top of the changing legal landscape without " getting bogged down in the details".
Tune in now to find out more.
On 16 May 2023, the European Commission published its Regulation on Deforestation-Free Products. The regulation aims to prevent certain raw materials and certain products made from those raw materials from entering the European Union (EU) market if they are produced illegally or cause deforestation or degradation.
A key requirement of the proposed regulation is the implementation of a due diligence system that requires the first importer of the relevant product to know the precise geo-localisation of a product's origin (i.e. the farm or forest) and have credible, verifiable information that there is no deforestation, forest degradation, or illegality in the production area. Once the product has entered the European Union (EU), companies along the supply chain must gather information, conduct a risk assessment, and undertake risk mitigation measures where necessary. The final regulation will enter into force in early June 2023, and companies will have 18-24 months to comply, depending on their size.
"Companies need to know what is coming and prepare themselves; this applies to companies importing and exporting products into the EU"
"The new regulation's greater focus on traceability could prompt brands to exit risky jurisdictions."
PODCAST: Listen to Giacomo Tabacco, Landscapes Engagement Manager, Earthworm Foundation talk about Earthworm Foundation's Landscapes approach, some of the key impacts that it's produced, and how it could help companies face the upcoming EU Deforestation Regulations.
"Specifically, as a buyer, the first thing I have on my mind when speaking to prospective suppliers is to request traceability information. Traceability it's the first step before we can claim anything about the origins of our products, about the origins of our ingredients."
- Uhendran Subpramaniam, Global Procurement Manager, Nestle
Tracing supply chains back to their origin is complex and difficult. Earthworm delves into Traceability to Plantations (TTP) and how it requires a united effort from multiple stakeholders. From hard-working farmers supported by the government to the refineries that process the raw materials and the brands that sell the final products. Watch the video to learn more.
We believe that sustainability is a journey rather than a destination. While meeting legal minimum compliance is a vital step towards this journey, it is not the end goal. We can effectively tackle environmental and social issues in supply chains through collective action and working with various stakeholders.
"Transparency remains the number one challenge in grievance management."
PODCAST: What is a grievance mechanism and why is it important to businesses? Listen to Rob Collier, Grievances Manager at Earthworm Foundation as he dives deep into the topic discussing the importance of and ways brands can implement and strengthen their grievance mechanisms, discussing the challenges and more.
Earthworm Foundation works together with its members on their responsible sourcing strategies to advance their climate, deforestation reduction, and human rights goals and agendas. Our members work with us on an ongoing journey of transformation and innovation. Together, we collaborate with companies, governments, civil societies and other stakeholders in key sourcing regions to bring about lasting change.
“Our focus is to increase engagement with local communities and leverage our influence to secure land rights for indigenous peoples and local communities.”
- Michele Zollinger, Global sustainable sourcing for Pulp and Paper lead, Nestle
Find out how brands such as Nestle, Mars Inc and 3M, which source pulp and paper in British Columbia, have partnered with the Tsay Keh Dene First Nation people, supporting their efforts to protect key parcels of land with cultural significance.
"We formed WhatsApp groups with farmers, government and experts. These tools have become an active platform for farmers to learn from each other and experts."
- Dehya Mahadin, Sabah Landscape Project Lead
With financial support from brands such as ADM (Archer Daniels Midland), Colgate Palmolive, Givaudan, Groupe Rocher, IOI Group, Johnson & Johnson, Nestlé and Reckitt, learn how Zainudy bin Jasman, a smallholder farmer from Sabah gained access to government funding contributing to an improvement in his livelihood.
Nestlé – in partnership with the Ivorian Ministry of Water and Forests (MINEF), committed to safeguarding and reforesting the Cavally classified forest. How community engagement is driving forest protection in Ivory Coast. To this end, the Société de Développement des Forêts (SODEFOR) and Earthworm Foundation were appointed to identify and implement inclusive solutions to protect and restore forests and build the resilience of rural communities to improve environmental quality.
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The content in this campaign is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. It is based on our interpretation of the new due diligence and no deforestation laws, which may be subject to change. Earthworm Foundation does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information provided and is not responsible for any errors or omissions. The readers should consult with legal counsel or other qualified professionals to obtain advice specific to their circumstances.