Over 200 years old, Bunge is the world’s leader in oilseed processing and a leading producer and supplier of specialty plant-based oils and fats.
Bunge says its mission is “to connect farmers to consumers to deliver essential food, feed and fuel to the world.”
The company is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, and we has over 23,000 employees in about 300 facilities located in more than 40 countries.
So, it was significant when—on May 1, 2023—Bunge announced the creation of a regenerative agriculture program to support Brazilian farmers in the transition to low-carbon agriculture, offering technical support, tools, products, and services, while supporting global efforts to rebuild soil quality and sequester carbon.
The program, which will be offered at no cost for farmers, promotes growth in productivity and reduction of costs through the application of cultivation best practices that improve soil fertility and health, increase CO2 storage in the ground, promote biological diversity, improve water retention and infiltration in the soil, and enhance the management of energy consumption and agricultural inputs.
The program consists of three steps which are customized according to the characteristics of each property:
- Diagnosis of the farm’s current regenerative agriculture practices;
- Development of a customized action plan according to each diagnosis, indicating the most effective regenerative practices that can be implemented and/or improved, including offering technical assistance to the transition to sustainable agriculture; and
- Connection to marketplace – Bunge will connect participating farmers to supply chain partners who seek sustainable products.
“The demand for sustainably produced agriculture products continues to increase, and our goal is to provide reliable and specific data so farmers can assess the need to implement additional, corrective or improvement measures that support them on their regenerative agriculture journey,” says Pamela Moreira, responsible for Sustainability in South America at Bunge.
The regenerative agriculture program already has dozens of large-scale farmers signed up, covering roughly 250,000 hectares (~615,000 acres) of land in the Brazilian states of Bahia, Maranhão, Mato Grosso, Paraná, Piauí, and Tocantins.
To implement the program, Bunge has convened a team of partners who share tools and expertise with participants to support to the adoption of regenerative practices in their operations, with a focus on monitoring and measuring progress and monetizing sustainable agriculture.
“We are convinced that the program will further strengthen Bunge’s connection with farmers,” says Rossano de Angelis Jr, Vice President of Agribusiness in South America at Bunge.
“With the expertise of our partner Orígeo, we have a unique model of support for farmers to ensure the productivity, profitability, and sustainability of their business. Our teams continuously work to add value to our partners, and we are committed to fostering best practices across all our value chains,” he concluded.
Orígeo, a joint venture between Bunge and UPL, is a key partner and will be working alongside the farmers by providing information and technological tools to digitize crop data, ensuring the production of high-quality, low-carbon grain, using fewer inputs and less fuel.
Image courtesy of Bunge.