ARGENTINA – COFCO International Argentina has successfully loaded 18,000 tonnes of certified deforestation-free soymeal at its Timbúes port terminal on the Parana River near Rosario. 

This marks the company’s first fully traceable and segregated soy shipment, aligned with the upcoming European Union Regulation on Deforestation-Free Products (EUDR).

The shipment, loaded on May 16 onto the MV Dublin Eagle, will be delivered to R&H Hall, Ireland’s largest feed manufacturer. The soymeal and the soybeans from which it was processed are certified free from recent deforestation. 

They have been segregated since harvesting to prevent any blending with non-certified produce.

COFCO emphasized the importance of this shipment as part of its commitment to achieving deforestation and conversion-free soy supply chains in the coming years. This effort is also aimed at reducing emissions from land use changes.

Thanks to early industry and government investments in Argentina’s Visec monitoring platform, developed to reduce the cost of traceability and serve the country’s entire soy chain, Argentina is now well-positioned to supply Europe with EUDR-compliant soybeans, meal, and related products,” COFCO stated.

Visec is expected to cover all soy supply chains in Argentina by the end of 2024, including intermediaries such as cooperatives. This makes Argentina the first country ready to comply with the EUDR, according to COFCO.

This shipment represents a significant shift from previous sustainable soy shipments that utilized the mass-balance model, in which certified and non-certified products were mixed during transit or production. 

The segregated model used for this shipment requires certified produce to remain physically separate from non-certified produce throughout the supply chain.

The EUDR, which came into force in 2023 and will be fully applicable by December 30, 2024, aims to promote the consumption of deforestation-free products within the EU, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss. 

Under the EUDR, operators or traders placing commodities like soy, palm oil, coffee, cattle, cocoa, wood, and rubber on the EU market must prove that their products do not originate from land deforested since 2020 or contribute to forest degradation.

COFCO International has recently set new sustainability goals to address deforestation, climate, and human rights more effectively. These goals are detailed in its 2023 Sustainability Report, which outlines progress on various environmental, social, and governance issues.

COFCO International, the overseas agriculture business platform for COFCO Corp.—China’s largest food and agriculture company—is focused on global supply chains for grains, oilseeds, sugar, coffee, and cotton. The company operates assets in 36 countries across the Americas, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

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