Scaling up efforts to restore forest in the Amazon
olam food ingredients (ofi), a global leader in natural and sustainable ingredients and solutions, Mondelēz International, Partnerships for Forests (P4F) and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) ("the partners") have announced they are scaling up efforts to halt deforestation and restore degraded land in Pará, Brazil, helping to bring 48,000 hectares of land under sustainable management by 2023.
Deforestation rates in Pará are the highest of any Brazilian state. 1.2 million hectares of forest have been lost in the last five years alone, mainly as forest is cleared to make way for cattle farming. Together, the partners are tackling this by promoting cocoa agroforestry – where cocoa is grown alongside native trees and fruits – as a more profitable alternative. The large-scale project aims to restore lost tree cover and help farmers to diversify and grow their livelihoods. It is also intended to encourage other industry players to replicate the model and help accelerate progress towards protecting this vital landscape.
The project is an expansion of a successful first phase which recently won Nature-Based Project of the Year at the Business Green Leaders Awards 2021. More than 250 farmers have already signed a zero-deforestation agreement, 16,000 hectares of land have been brought under sustainable management, and 1.6 million Brazilian reais of subsidized credit have been unlocked for implementation and management of agroforestry.
The next phase of the project will scale up further to cover 700 farmers and 48,000 hectares of land by 2023. Farmers and rural technicians will get added support and training on cocoa agroforestry through a Technical Assistance Hub co-funded by Mondelēz, P4F, Humanize Institute, GIZ and Extreme E. They will also be supported by ofi and Mondelēz with premiums for their cocoa in exchange for zero deforestation and reforestation commitments and get help accessing credit through a partnership with Banco da Amazônia.