Cargill is one of the largest food processing companies in the world, with more than 150 years of history. The organization has been at PPA since 2019, contributing to the Markets Working Group, which develops local value chains, stimulating the acquisition of products and services from local companies by the private sector present in the Amazon.
In 2020, Cargill became part of the PPA Deliberative Council. In addition, it supported the partnership “PPA Solidarity: Response to COVID-19 in the Amazon”, an initiative that engages the private sector in strategic partnerships to leverage innovative and scalable solutions to strengthen the rapid response to emergencies and combating COVID-19. Alessandro da Cunha Fernandes, institutional relations manager at Cargill talked about PPA in line with the company's sustainable development proposals.
1. As a member of the deliberative board of the Parceiros pela Amazônia (PPA) Platform, what does Cargill expect from PPA?
We believe that Cargill - along with our industry, farmers, local governments and customers - are all responsible for transforming the food supply chain. For this reason, we are interacting with stakeholders every day to make progress and looking for durable and economically viable solutions to protect our forests and native vegetation, also taking into account the social and economic implications in these communities.
We have the support of the Parceiros pela Amazônia Platform so that we can work on the best sustainable initiatives and solutions for the Amazon. We have all the expertise of the group and other private sector organizations so that we can create viable economic alternatives to improve the quality of life for people who live in this region, in addition to conserving all its biodiversity and natural resources.
2.How have you seen the evolution of the Platform in the last two years?
As members of PPA and engaged in the Markets Working Group, we reiterate our thanks and look with great satisfaction on the dynamics that have been attributed to the entire trajectory of the Platform since the first meetings with the formation of GTS, hiring of specific studies, definition of lines action plans and schedules, as well as interactivity between the companies that are part of each work group and other stakeholders involved in the process. We also highlight the seriousness with which PPA has been managed through the creation of a Deliberative Council, which we are part of, providing us with effective participation in all procedures and guidelines, ensuring that we have full transparency in decision-making and definitions in favor of PPA and its members.
3. How has Cargill's response to COVID-19 been in the territories in which it operates in Brazil? And why participate in PPA Solidariedade?
We are living in a time of many challenges and fulfilling Cargill's purpose in feeding the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way has never been more necessary than now. Therefore, in addition to ensuring the safety of our employees and the continuity of our operations in a safe manner, we join our best efforts to be able to be with those who are most vulnerable to the effects of the pandemic.
In Brazil, Cargill has donated about 2 million reais to charities in 15 Brazilian states since the beginning of the pandemic. We are working with non-profit partners and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to help address food insecurity and the emergency medical needs of those who are vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19.
One example of these donations was the partnership with USAID (United States Agency for International Development), which together will donate more than R$ 1 million to the PPA Solidarity program to mitigate COVID-19 among the most vulnerable populations in Brazilian Amazon. The initiative aims to donate basic food baskets to more than 7 thousand families, to mobilize communication campaigns about the rich of the disease to more than 50 thousand people in the Santarém, Belterra and Mojui dos Campos region, to promote prevention and control measures in health units and homes; support the local health system, such as hospitals and clinics; and support 5 associations of entrepreneurs, small companies with social impact, producer groups and cooperatives, which directly impacted at least 200 families, with financial contributions, business advisory services and access to low interest loans or microcredit.
4.How can the pandemic impact the change to a more sustainable model in the Amazon?
In this pandemic moment, we need to act to mitigate Covid-19 among the most vulnerable populations in the Amazon. Thus, taking care of the well-being of the people who live there, bringing development and prosperity to the communities, we can create new realities and alternatives to count on the help of all in the preservation of the region's biodiversity and its natural resources.