Cargill’s soy policies and on-the-ground impacts are slowly improving. In 2016, Cargill worked with industry, government, and NGOs to extend Brazil’s Soy Moratorium indefinitely. Cargill is also implementing adherence to Brazil’s Rural Environmental Registry program (CAR) over the next few growing seasons as a direct soy sourcing requirement. In 2019, Cargill released an updated forest policy, launched an independent “Forest Protection Advisory Panel,” and announced its “South American Soy Action Plan.”
Cargill’s approach to eliminating deforestation in its soy supply chain has been inadequate. The company’s focus on illegal deforestation leaves it open to the deforestation allowed by Brazil’s 2015 Forest Code, which allows for 65 percent of Cerrado land to be cleared legally, and the company’s goal of eliminating deforestation in its agricultural supply chains by 2030 opens to the door for the company to continue sourcing from suppliers linked to deforestation in the Cerrado. Cargill’s recent update to its forest policy and its new South American soy plan might have mitigated these risks, but changes are likely insufficient.
In 2014, Cargill endorsed the New York Declaration on Forests.