28 January, 2019

First sale of RTRS non-OGM credits completed

RTRS’ non-GMO producers received support from the Scandinavian market.

December 2018 saw the first sale of RTRS non-GMO credits to the Scandinavian market. RTRS non-GMO credits are the result of a new certification model, launched in 2018, which enables buyers to support RTRS’ non-GMO soy production through a credit system, without acquiring any physical soy.

This means that RTRS producers of non-GMO soy in the Brazilian Cerrado have, for the first time, received support to continue their production of responsible non-GMO soy. The first transaction was a sale by Fazendas Bartira – which have been operating and investing in agricultural assets in Brazil for over 30 years – to Scandinavian companies Skånemejerier AB a dairy company located in the south of Sweden, and Unil AS – a wholly-owned subsidiary of NorgesGruppen AS, a Norwegian market leader in the convenience, retail and food services markets.

“We are proud and happy to make this commitment, which will strengthen the focus on non-GMO production and support producers in Brazil’s Cerrado region who operate in compliance with RTRS principles and criteria”,states Anna Frey-Wulff, Corporate Sustainability Manager at Skånemejerier.

The two Scandinavian companies made the first-ever purchase of RTRS non-GMO, acquiring 1,280 RTRS non-GMO credits from Brazil (with support from ACT Commodities). This is an important step towards increasing responsible production of non-GMO soy and a positive sign of increasing demand.

 “Unil is very proud to be among the first buyers of RTRS non-GMO credits. Considering Norway’s strong non-GMO focus, as well as Unil’s deforestation policy, it was a natural step for us to support and promote a responsible market for non-GMO soy farming in the vulnerable regions of the Brazilian Cerrado. We are very happy that RTRS now makes this possible”, states Julie Haugli Aarnæs, Sustainability Manager at Unil AS.

“We are continuously improving our farming practices to the highest standards of operational efficiency and responsible production. We are ecstatic that our pioneering initiatives have been recognized and encouraged”, says Luiz Iaquinta, Quality,Safety, Health and the Environment Director at Fazendas Bartira.

RTRS non-GMO certified soy

The RTRS module for non-GMO has been in place since 2011 and the association will continue to support it for anyone wishing to acquire non-GMO soy through physically-segregated supply chains.

To acquire RTRS non-GMO credits, producers need to comply with local laws, the RTRS Principles and Criteria (legal compliance and good business practices; responsible working conditions, responsible community relations; environmental responsibility and adequate agricultural practices) and all non-GMO production requirements at farm level, which includes checking the product status in every non-GMO plot at harvest time. This new model enables buyers to support RTRS’ non-GMO soy production through a credit system, without acquiring any physical soy.

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