FSA arriving at the heart of sustainable agriculture in Latin America

23rd June 2020

The Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA) is reaching all corners around the world and setting a precedent in industry collaboration in on-farm tools. As part of this trajectory, the FSA is attracting growing interest particularly from Latin America. A recent FSA introduction webinar hosted by SAI Platform and held in Spanish, brought together an audience of almost 80 participants and took twice as long as scheduled due to the high level of engagement.

The story of FSA’s impact in South and Central America originally goes back to orange producers in Brazil where the FSA became the industry reference for demonstrating sustainable agricultural practices. More recently, FSA verifications in Spanish speaking Latin America have seen a steady rise most notably in Argentina, Mexico and Chile.

Various Latin American countries are important exporters of agricultural ingredients to many of SAI Platform’s member companies, and this is reflected in the variety of crops that have been verified across the continent. Citrus production is most prevalent (oranges and lemons), but grains (rice, barley, corn including in its native country Mexico), grapes (e.g. for wine in Argentina), strawberries (Mexico), and even cranberries, sugarcane and agave have been verified.

“At the moment, the FSA is being used by large numbers of small-scale growers as well as on large estate-based agriculture throughout the continent.” commented Nick Betts, Americas Director for SAI Platform.

“Our support team at the FSA help desk are increasingly responding to more and more producers who are working with our tools, including countries in Latin America that are new to the FSA.”

Many producers of fruit and vegetables benefit from our joint solution with GLOBALG.A.P., allowing them to demonstrate FSA performance by answering a limited number of extra questions on top of their GLOBALG.A.P. Certification. The so-called FSA Add-on turns out to be more popular in Latin America than anywhere else in the world so far.

The FSA enables companies in Latin America to demonstrate that they are true global players, adhering to agriculture practices that are regarded to be sustainable all around the world. The FSA is able to cover the rich variety of crops and farming types and practices across this diverse continent like no other system that is available to the food and beverage industry.