Growers forge market path for sustainable sugar

Peak sugarcane organisation CANEGROWERS is opening more market doors for Queensland sugar by achieving advanced alignment between Smartcane BMP and a global sustainability program.

Following benchmarking and alignment exercises, the VIVE Sustainable Supply Programme will recognise sugarcane produced by growers accredited through the Queensland industry’s Smartcane BMP program as equivalent to its Farm Module level.

“Sugar buyers, commodity marketers and food manufacturers are under increasing pressure from consumers to source products that meet verified sustainability criteria,” CANEGROWERS CEO Dan Galligan said.

“This collaboration with VIVE is part of CANEGROWERS’ focus on building the industry’s reputation for environmental stewardship and demonstrating the sustainability of Queensland sugar to domestic and export supply chains.”

VIVE consists of five modules that ‬cover all the operations and activities of sugar production and supply from the farm to the end user. ‬‬‬Smartcane BMP is a farm-focused continuous improvement program developed by the Queensland sugarcane industry. Managed by CANEGROWERS, it has so far accredited almost 40% of the sugarcane area in Queensland.

“This alignment has been a few years in the making and is very significant for the Queensland sugarcane industry,” Mr Galligan said. “It creates an opportunity for CANEGROWERS to explore more ways in which the sustainable farming practices of growers in Queensland can be recognised. “

Benjamin French, Senior Trader at Czarnikow and Head of VIVE development in the Asia-Pacific Region, says one of VIVE’s core objectives was to collaborate with other well-established programs and build on their success.

“In this instance, Smartcane BMP has done fantastic work in progressing sustainable sugarcane farming in Australia. To build on Smartcane BMP’s achievements, we want to develop sustainable verification from when their accredited product is delivered to the mill all the way through to the end-users in the export markets,” he said.

“We now look forward to inviting Australian mills and exporters onto the VIVE Programme, enabling us to develop fully verified sustainable supply chains from sugarcane farms to the participating VIVE refineries in Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

“VIVE has exceptional support from industrial buyers in these markets. We look forward to supporting them with sustainable sugar from Australia and, in turn, rewarding those in the supply chain who have invested in continuously improving their sustainability credentials.”

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