At morrisons we are committed to using sustainable soy in our supply chains.
Soy is an incredibly valuable and versatile commodity. While customers may be familiar with soy used in tofu, soy sauce or as a dairy substitute the high protein composition of the bean (around 38%) has led to it becoming a core component of farmed animal feeds, particularly for poultry, pigs and fish. At a global level an emerging middle class is driving demand for higher consumption of animal protein which is in turn driving the expansion of soy cultivation. While soy can be produced in temperate or tropical climates South American supply chains are important to european markets and increasing production on the continent puts pressure on land of global ecological value, like the Cerrado in Brazil and Gran Chaco in Argentina, it risks increased rates of deforestation and land clearance and encroaching on the rights of indigenous communities.
We are committed to sustainable sourcing and recognise the need for action to address the challenges production of forest commodities like soy pose. Our approach aims to remove the non-essential reliance on soy in animal feeds and ensure its sustainable production where used in our wider supply chains.
In 2018, we became signatories to the Cerrado Manifesto Statement of Support - committing to support efforts to halt forest loss associated with agricultural commodity production and to working with industry, producers, governments and civil society to protect globally important natural landscapes within a framework of good governance and land planning policy.
We are also members of the UK Roundtable on Sustainable Soy - A collaboration between the UK Government and Industry which includes a commitment to source soya that is legal and cultivated in a way that protects against conversion of forests and valuable native vegetation.
Time bound plan:
To support our commitment to the sustainable sourcing of soy, and our overarching ambition to achieve zero deforestation in our supply chains by 2025, we have developed a time bound plan to implement the use of credible third party standards which assure of of zero deforestation.
- Soy ingredients: From 2021 require certification for soy used as an ingredient in all Morrisons own brand products
- Fresh beef, lamb & liquid milk: From 2021 soy should not be use soy as a component of their animal feed
- Fresh fish & poultry: From 2021 require certification for soy used as an ingredient in all Morrisons own brand products
- Fresh eggs: From 2022 require certification for soy used as an ingredient in all Morrisons own brand products
- Fresh pork: From 2023 require certification for soy used as an ingredient in all Morrisons own brand products
Our plan will allow the use of credits from an approved standard until the end of 2024 with the ambition to achieve physical supply chains for the production of all soy used in our supply chains by by 2025.
Across our fresh proteins our soy footprint in animal feed is calculated at 227,881 tonnes for 2019, 12,817 tonnes can already be evidenced as free from deforestation and we are working hard to improve oversight of the rest.
- 2018 Signatory to the Cerrado Manifesto Statement of support
- 2020 launch soy policy and time bound plan
- 2020 Member of the UK Roundtable on Sustainable Soy
What does physical supply chains mean?
Commodities like soy and palm are traded and processed on incredibly large scales and credit trading can be used as a mechanism to allow a buyer to purchase credits for the sustainable production of these products without their supply chain actually using them. This provides a valuable market to help support the sustainable production of these products, however our plan prioritises transition from the use of credits to physical supply chains standards that assure of zero deforestation (e.g. mass balance or segregated).
What are the credible standards which assure of zero deforestation?
A range of different soy production standards exist. These typically use third party audits to meet with producers, review production standards, environmental management, land rights and the history of site development. We review and recognise standards which align with our ambitions, such as the Roundtable on Responsible Soy (RTRS) a standards body we have supported through membership for a number of years.