Towards climate-smart sustainable production models
Our long-term vision is that producers, companies and governments implement measures and policies that support climate-smart, sustainable agrocommodity production models. These climate-smart, sustainable production models should avoid deforestation and include (elements of) climate-smart agricultural practices. Besides, they offer a positive value proposition and fair living income for producers, taking the different needs and interests of men, women and youth into account. Women, men and youth are equally represented in producer associations and in decision-making processes.
On this page you will find links to publications, interview articles, news items and external resources, and more. We will continue our work and share our findings through regular updates on this site. So, come back soon to find out more!
In 2021, hundreds of farmers throughout the Bafwasende landscape started to establish cocoa agroforestry systems on previously deforested lands, with the help of Tropenbos DR Congo. This is a major step towards more sustainable farming and improved livelihoods.
Tropenbos Ghana helped to develop 12 Village Savings and Loan Associations in the Juabeso-Bia and Sefwi-Wiawso landscapes. This has provided cocoa smallholders with access to finance to invest in climate-smart practices, such as diversifying their crops and improving irrigation.
The European Commission's proposed EU Regulation on deforestation-free products is a welcome step towards a higher ambition to tackle global deforestation, and forest degradation and to level the playing field for companies. Smallholders (and especially women) are some of the most marginalised actors in global supply chains. They produce a third of the world’s food supply and represent a large share of the producers in sectors included in the scope of the proposal (such as coffee, cocoa and palm oil). They often depend on large operators to buy their product and to decide the price.
Deforestation and forest degradation are important sources of biodiversity loss, greenhouse gas emissions and human rights abuses. It is widely understood that EU consumption destructs tropical forests around the globe; the EU has therefore the responsibility to urgently act. Voluntary steps to make supply chains deforestation-free are not sufficient to address the problem of imported deforestation.
In Mid-December 2021 the European Commission is due to release a regulatory proposal to minimise the European Union’s (EU) deforestation and forest degradation footprint. In advance of this draft proposal, six NGOs have come together to outline how the EU can ensure that the Regulation does not harm communities and smallholders (key actors in the production of forest and ecosystem risk commodities (FERCs)).
Much of the deforestation that takes place in Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America is the result of the European consumption of commodities, such as soy, cocoa and palm oil. Stricter EU-level regulations could go a long way to put an end to deforestation. Such regulations are a contentious political issue, but at the end of 2020, after years of concerted lobbying by TBI and partners, there was a breakthrough.
Synopsis: Research shows that oil palm expansion in Kalangala District, Uganda, has had severe negative effects on food security and the environment. Based on these research results, the Government of Uganda has improved the planning of oil palm expansion in other parts of the country.
After two decades of failed interventions across the cocoa sector, cocoa farming communities are still battling the effects of poverty, child labour and deforestation. The 2020 Cocoa Barometer report published this week is a rallying call to action: it outlines the necessary steps governments and industry should take, together with farmers and civic society organisations, to end deforestation and human rights abuses in cocoa supply chains.
Cocoa agroforestry systems can bring a wide range of ecological benefits; biodiversity conservation of flora and fauna, carbon sequestration, preserving and strengthening soil moisture and fertility, contributing to pest control, and microclimatic control such as stimulating rainfall, and many other benefits. However, a large gap separates the current reality of agroforestry in the cocoa sector from its potential, and agroforestry should not replace forest areas, nor can simplified agroforestry be a substitute for more diverse agroforestry systems.
In this short video we present how the villagers of Laman Satong in West Kalimantan prevented their forest from being converted into an oil palm plantation by applying for a village forest permit. But they did not ban oil palm completely.
Before the advent of oil palm plantations in Kalangala islands on Lake Victoria, subsistence agriculture and fishing were the dominant economic activities. However, oil palm plantation monoculture is now the leading economic activity and has resulted in vegetation and land use changes. The oil palm plantations came with many wide ranging negative impacts from deforestation, land grabbing, shift in the agricultural systems, food insecurity to loss of livelihoods among others. This video highlights lessons from Kalangala to raise awareness of the negative impacts of oil palm plantations, so that investors and communities make better informed decisions in the future.