World’s First Interactive Practitioner’s Guide for Sustainable Sourcing of Agricultural Raw Materials

4th June 2015

Lausanne, Switzerland

Climate change, increasing pressure on natural resources and continuing poverty and social inequity are affecting crops and water supply globally. These trends present increasingly significant risks –and at the same time also innovation opportunities- for companies in the food & beverage (F&B) value chain. F&B companies are among the world’s largest purchasers of agricultural raw materials. In response, many of these players have set ambitious sustainable sourcing goals and are working on implementation.

SAI Platform, together with several other international organizations, co-launched the world’s first practitioner’s guide to sustainable sourcing of agricultural raw materials in 2013. The ambition was to make available an open source innovation tool that captures, in a single document, real-life best practice and experiences from global corporations within a strategic, business logic-focused framework.

Today, SAI Platform and its three partner organizations are launching a revamped, improved and now also interactive practitioner’s guide to sustainable sourcing of agricultural raw materials.  It is a go-to, one- stop- shop, state of the art global resource for companies committed to effective sustainable sourcing.

Taking on board recent developments and new sustainable sourcing best practices, the new guide has been entirely revised and updated and includes new practical tools, real-life examples and illustrations.  This now on-line sustainable sourcing resource empowers companies and their managers by providing a user-friendly step-by-step roadmap to developing and rolling out sustainable agriculture sourcing programs effectively.

Hans Jöhr, Corporate Head of Agriculture for Nestlé S.A., who made a keynote speech at the launch of the interactive guide at IMD today, commented: “The real innovation here is having the entire procurement community on the same page around sustainability for the first time. It’s a benchmark helping companies to shape their practices in sustainable sourcing for the years to come, and also to embed sustainable sourcing in their brand promises.”  

Peter-Erik Ywema, SAI Platform’s General Manager, adds: “In recent years, we have seen a remarkable increase in the number of companies publicly committing to ambitious sustainable sourcing targets. Procurement professionals need hands-on and easy-to-use guidance to initiate, implement and improve their sustainable sourcing, and that is exactly what this now interactive guide is about.”  

The guide’s revision is the fruit of a collaborative effort by a number of global organizations that are all active players in promoting sustainable sourcing of agricultural raw materials: the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative (SAI) Platform, the CSL Learning Platform of IMD’s Global Center for Sustainability Leadership, the International Trade Centre, and the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH).

Click here to see the interactive Practitioner’s Guide for Sustainable Sourcing of Agricultural Raw Materials.

About SAI Platform

The Sustainable Agriculture Initiative (SAI) Platform is the global food value chain initiative promoting the development of sustainable agriculture worldwide.SAI Platform is a non-profit organization supporting its members to implement sustainable agriculture practices and sustainable sourcing of agricultural raw materials, involving different stakeholders of the food chain. SAI Platform counts over 70 members, who share the same view on sustainable agriculture:“the efficient production of safe, high quality agricultural products, in a way that protects and improves the natural environment, the social and economic conditions of farmers, their employees and local communities, and safeguards the health and welfare of all farmed species.” Products and services include guidelines, tools and training for the implementation of sustainable agriculture at farm level and sustainable sourcing throughout the supply chain.

About International Trade Centre

ITC is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. ITC assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets, thereby contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the Aid-for-Trade agenda and the Millennium Development Goals. ITC has developed the Standards Map, a web-based tool to identify, review, compare sustainability standards and which offers a self-assessment module that companies can use in order to generate a sustainability diagnostic report and a roadmap for compliance to selected standards, codes and audit protocols. ITC collaborates with SAI Platform on the building of the online tool for the Farm Sustainability Assessment.

About the CSL Learning Platform of IMD’s Global Center for Sustainability Leadership

The IMD-CSL Learning Platform is a corporate membership and partner driven research and learning initiative, carrying out research and thought leadership activities that are anchored in business realities. (“Real World, Real Learning”).

About the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH)

IDH is a public private partnership that accelerates and up-scales sustainable trade by building impact-oriented coalitions of stakeholders to develop and disseminative innovative strategies for transformative supply chain models.


SAI Platform        

Lettemieke Mulder

Senior Communications Manager