Supply chain efforts have not been successful in eliminating deforestation from the production of agricultural commodities by 2020. Although the rate of tree cover loss due to commercial agriculture has been declining in recent years, levels in 2018 remain similar to the decade preceding the NYDF. While there is some evidence that company initiatives can contribute to a reduction in some geographies (e.g. in the palm oil, and pulp and paper sectors in Indonesia), we are still largely unable to link these efforts to global impacts on forests.
More than half of the companies exposed to forest risk and assessed by Supply-Change.Org and Forest 500 made a public commitment to address deforestation (55 percent and 60 percent, respectively). Assessing the quality and implementation of these commitments, companies in the palm oil, and pulp and paper sectors in Southeast Asia are consistently more advanced than their counterparts in cattle and soy supply chains in Latin America.
A large number of companies based in Europe and North America announced commitments and some set requirements for their upstream suppliers to address forest risks. There is a risk, however, that produce linked to deforestation is absorbed by increasing demand in other markets, domestic and international, that give less priority to forest protection.
Forest monitoring and supply chain traceability technologies are evolving at a rapid pace and allow for improved risk assessment, supply chain management and engagement with producers. However, tracking and engagement is often limited to immediate suppliers (e.g. processors and refiners) and fails to reach producers, in particular the millions of smallholders (e.g. in the palm oil supply chain).
A large number of companies still fail to report on progress to address deforestation in their supply chains. In 2019, around one-third of the 350 most influential companies in forest-risk commodity supply chains did not disclose this information.
Jurisdictional and landscape interventions are still considered an effective way to address deforestation along with other environmental, social, and economic issues. These interventions are gaining traction, yet progress is difficult to systematically assess.
Over the last year, European countries adopted promising policies around the due diligence of forest risk commodities. These have not yet been translated into concrete interventions.
The Forest Declaration Assessment and the Forest Declaration Platform have been supported over the years by the Climate and Land Use Alliance, the Good Energies Foundation, the Bezos Earth Fund, the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) of Germany, and the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), which supported this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag.
This project is supported by the Climate and Land Use Alliance and the Good Energies Foundation. Research that contributed to this project is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI). The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision adopted by the German Bundestag.