SAI Platform opens up membership to retailers, creating significant opportunities to scale up sustainable agriculture practices globally

7th July 2014

The Sustainable Agriculture Initiative (SAI) Platform announces that it expands its membership to include retailers, who can join the network from July 7th, 2014, onwards.

Over the past few years, SAI Platform’s work on advancing sustainable agricultural practices has caught the attention of food and drink retailers, some of whom have since expressed a desire to join as members. Food and drink companies and retailers often have similar challenges, concerns and objectives when it comes to buying agricultural ingredients and promoting sustainability in the supply chain.  Welcoming retailers as members is therefore a natural and even essential next step in the further development of the Platform. It will also strengthen its upscaling and harmonization capabilities, while increasing the overall impact of sustainable agriculture practices globally.  

With retailers on board, we can simply achieve much more”, says Peter Erik Ywema, General Manager of SAI Platform. Retailers purchase agricultural ingredients directly or indirectly from farmers and increasingly set ambitious sustainable agriculture sourcing targets. “SAI Platform can help retailers to meet these targets and promote sustainable agriculture practices in their respective supply chains”, further explains Ywema.  

Chris Brown, Senior Director Sustainable Business ASDA, and one of SAI Platform’s Advisory Council members, adds:   “I believe this is a significant and very welcome development. With retailers joining SAI Platform, the potential for positively influencing sustainable purchasing and agricultural practices will increase considerably”.

The new development will also have a positive impact on farmers’ lives. An increasing number of food and drink companies sharing aligned sustainable agriculture objectives and tools with farmers will result in a reduction of audits, surveys, and work for farmers.

SAI Platform was set up in 2002 as a forum for food and drink companies to develop joint understanding of, and implementation tools for sustainable agriculture – which were practically non-existent at the time. Membership was limited to food companies with an active role in the farm-to-retailer part of the value chain. Now, 12 years later, SAI Platform has over 60 members who share a common definition and vision for sustainable agriculture and a clear focus on implementing sustainable agriculture practices and harmonizing tools and approaches.Just like existing members, retailers joining SAI Platform commit to the organisation’s Code of Conduct, including commitments to support, promote and work towards the production, procurement and use of sustainably produced goods and to implement relevant sustainable agriculture principles and practices.

About SAI Platform

SAI Platform, the global initiative helping food and drink companies and retailers to achieve sustainable production and sourcing of agricultural raw materials, has played a critical role in advancing sustainable agriculture worldwide.  SAI Platform brings together members who share, at precompetitive level, knowledge and initiatives to support the implementation of sustainable agriculture practices. With over 60 global members collaborating with millions of farmers around the world, they have the potential to influence farming practices in every agricultural producing country.

Examples of tools and guides that have been developed in the past years include Sustainable Agriculture Principles & Practices, the world’s first Practitioners Guide for Sustainable Sourcing, Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA 2.0), Sustainability Performance Assessment (SPA 2.0), and several other topical resources on water, soil and other issues.

For more information on SAI Platform, visit: