Reeds That Produce Honey Without Bees

SupplyShift Staff

January 07, 2017

The Persians, followed by the Greeks, discovered the famous ‘Reeds That Produce Honey Without Bees’ in India between the 6th and 4th centuries BC. Today, sugarcane is the world’s largest crop by production and has its place among the challenges of the 21st century; namely, feeding a growing population as well as providing renewable energy, biomaterials, decent work in emerging economies, and so much more.

Many of the sustainability challenges in sugarcane are no different than any other tropical agricultural commodity. Issues such as legislative compliance, land ownership, labor rights, and ecological protection are all country-specific, not crop specific, and the severity and nature of the issues depend on the local governance, ecosystem, and socioeconomic contexts.

Lack of product segregation, and therefore traceability to a specific farm, is one of the main sustainability challenges. Both sugar and sugarcane ethanol usually require two large-scale industrial processes before they enter the supply chain.

The only long-term solution to sustainable sourcing is through a standardized, collective, scalable, replicable approach. SupplyShift’s new customer Bonsucro is an international non-profit, multi-stakeholder organization established in 2008 to promote sustainable sugarcane. With over 450 members in 41 countries, Bonsucro currently represents over 25% of the worlds’ sugarcane. Bonsucro’s stated aim is to reduce the environmental and social impacts of sugarcane production while recognizing the need for economic viability. It does this through setting sustainability standards and certifying sugar cane products including ethanol, sugar, and molasses. Bonsucro’s global standard provides value for buyer and producer alike and thereby sends a unified market signal.

We are really excited to team up with Bonsucro to launch a technology platform that will allow companies to trace their supply and develop a robust sourcing strategy, while at the same time supporting producers in form of sugar mills and farmers to get certified against a global standard and trace their ‘mass balance’.

‘Finding the right solution partner was critical in our pursuit in taking Bonsucro to the next level’, said Simon Usher, CEO of Bonsucro. ‘SupplyShift has a fundamental understanding of our goals and mission and provides an innovative cloud-based platform to support us and our members into the future.’

Organizations are under ever-increasing pressure to manage risk and improve environmental, social, and economic performance in their supply network. Our partnership with Bonsucro is a great example how to make it easier to accomplish these goals. It will be exciting to work with the entire sugar value chain from buyers to producers through the implementation of this project.

SupplyShift Staff

January 07, 2017