Find out more about our approach to sourcing soy
Soy is a globally traded commodity produced in both temperate and tropical regions and serves as a key source of protein and vegetable oils. It is an incredibly useful and versatile ingredient and in its simplest form is sold as dried beans, and soy milk and yoghurt are popular dairy alternatives. Look closer at ingredient lists and you’ll find soy flour, soy oil and soy sauce and soy lecithin in chocolate.
The main use of soy though is in animal feed. It is one of the highest quality vegetable proteins available in volume and brings unique nutritional benefit, in particular helping maintain healthy growth so that products like pork and chicken can be an everyday part of our diet.
The use of soy is not without its challenges and despite industry efforts and some notable success stories, soy continues to contribute to deforestation in South America, albeit at a dramatically lower rate than before. We have made major investments in a broad range of programmes to address the multiple causes of deforestation and support the development of more sustainable soy.
Commitments and targets
Our goal is to ensure that all soy used in our products is sourced from locations that don’t contribute to deforestation.
We’ve supported the sustainable production of soy through the purchase of RTRS credits or via our direct supplier procurement to a deforestation free production standard for 100% of the soy in our supply chain from South America. From 2020, our focus has shifted to ensure that 100% of our soy is sourced from verified deforestation free regions by 2025.
To achieve this we work collaboratively throughout the sector via the Cerrado SoS Group, UK Roundtable for Sustainable Soy, the Retail Soy Group; and the Soy Transparency Coalition – a new organisation we helped to create to assess key soy traders’ performance. In 2021, we also joined 39 other companies to write to Brazil’s National Congress encouraging them to reject a legislative proposal that could open up the Amazon for deforestation.
Our supply chain is complex. We don’t own farms or factories and don’t purchase ingredients directly. Most of the ingredients that go into our products are sourced in a global market. That said, in comparison to many others in our industry we are also a relatively low user of globally traded soy.
We provide a mix of market insights, technical expertise and funding to achieve the widespread transformation that needs to happen to help us achieve our goal.
Our approach to sourcing more sustainable soy is as follows: