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IDH - The Sustainable Trade Initiative and brand partners including Mars, PepsiCo and Unilever have developed the platform to enable a landscape approach to sustainable commodity sourcing.
Global brands Mars, PepsiCo and
Unilever are among those
involved in developing SourceUp — a collaborative
online platform powered by IDH - The Sustainable Trade
Initiative, with the goal of increasing
the sustainability of commodity producing regions.
IDH convenes companies, civil society organizations, governments and others in
public-private partnerships to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth at scale
in commodity sectors and sourcing areas. IDH and partners have developed
SourceUp to meet the need for a landscape approach to sustainable sourcing.
Rather than brands focusing solely on the producers and regions in their own
supply chains, this collective approach aims to improve the sustainability of
entire sourcing regions.
SourceUp links buyers to coalitions of farmers, producers, government and civil
society in a certain region. These coalitions decide on shared sustainability
targets and make a long-term agreement, called a ‘Compact.’ Each Compact has the
power to transform agricultural production systems far beyond what individual
producers, local governments, civil society organizations or traders can do
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“SourceUp is an exciting innovation in supply chain sustainability. Our hope is
that it will allow PepsiCo and other companies to support credible local action
and impact on sustainable agriculture, human rights and livelihoods in key
sourcing regions,” said Meghan Ryan, Senior Manager of Global Sustainable
Sourcing at PepsiCo.
So far, there are 11 sourcing regions in Brazil, India, Indonesia,
Liberia and Vietnam on the SourceUp platform; with commodities including
and timber. Sustainability themes vary — from forests and natural ecosystems
“SourceUp is a game-changer,” Daan Wensing, CEO of IDH, told
Sustainable Brands™. “It is a supply chain sustainability solution designed
for use by mainstream businesses, as well as sustainability leaders. It allows
companies to use their supply chain to deliver on their corporate sustainability
commitments, help whole landscapes become sustainable, and contribute to the
Sustainable Development Goals. We can expect rapid growth during 2021 — with
further Compacts in Indonesia, Vietnam, India, Brazil, Colombia, Liberia
and Cameroon waiting to come on board; and a significant number of new
commodities to be added.”
One of the Compacts already signed is in Indonesia’s Aceh Tamiang District —
where commodities including palm oil, natural rubber, pulp and
Last month, Unilever and IDH
a combined investment of over €1.5 million to support Aceh Tamiang in achieving
its sustainable production, nature protection and social inclusion goals. The
three-year program will increase forest protection and reforestation, improve
monitoring, support smallholder farmers to increase its sustainable palm oil
productivity by 30 percent, and protect an area within the region’s Leuser
“We are very proud to support this initiative,” Dave Ingram, Chief
Procurement Officer at Unilever,
at the time. “This investment is testament to our commitment to support
smallholder farmers —the true stewards of the land — and to protect and restore
natural habits in urgent need of protection, such as the Leuser ecosystem.”
The Aceh province covers a large part of the Leuser ecosystem — home to
endangered species such as Sumatran orangutan, Sumatran elephant and rhinoceros.
In order to protect natural forests, especially the Leuser ecosystem, IDH
brought together the key players in the region: the Government of Aceh Tamiang
District; the Indonesian Association of Indonesian Palm Oil Producers
(GAPKI) Aceh; the Leuser Conservation Forum (FKL); Yayasan Inisiatif
Dagang Hijau; the Aceh Tamiang Farmers and Fishermen Group Association
(KTNA) and the Forest Management Unit (KPH) Region III Aceh.
Together, they signed a Compact committing to sustainable palm oil production
targets (sustainable crude palm oil production will be increased by 30 percent),
protection of forest areas and the Leuser ecosystem (deforestation rate will be
reduced by 50 percent), and improving the welfare of independent smallholders,
to be achieved in 2023.
IDH connected government and public stakeholders to private stakeholders; with
PepsiCo and Unilever playing a multi-faceted role in formulating the shared
goals of the Aceh Tamiang Compact, investing in, and sourcing from the region.
Their involvement through this collaborative Compact follows the SourceUp model,
taking the whole district into account rather than focusing on a specific
“SourceUp is particularly attractive because you have hard numerical targets set
by the government and local stakeholders. That is quite impressive,” Reuben
Blackie, Manager of Sustainable Agriculture (APAC and AMESA) at PepsiCo,
explained. “SourceUp’s focus on local ownership and the involvement of other
companies gives promise for success. IDH has convened a number of companies such
as PepsiCo, Musim Mas (palm oil producer) and Unilever to all work in
parallel, so you can start to develop the critical mass that is required for
As more Compacts are agreed, they will be published on the SourceUp platform to
help companies identify regions where there are Compacts and responsible
producing commitments in place. Companies can then connect with Compacts either
to source directly from the area, or to support with investment or expertise.
Businesses who are already sourcing from a particular region can use SourceUp to
find a suitable partner to implement a specific sustainability initiative.
Published Jan 4, 2021 7am EST / 4am PST / 12pm GMT / 1pm CET