Recently FEFAC, the European Feed Manufacturers' Federation, published its Feed Sustainability Charter 2030. In it, FEFAC outlines five ambitions for the next decade: carbon footprint reduction, increased efficiency, responsible sourcing, animal welfare, and sector resilience.
Johan den Hartog
Managing Director, GMP+ International
These five ambitions reflect the common view of feed producing companies throughout Europe when it comes to feed responsibility. FEFAC points out sustainable food production systems ‘cannot exist without well-functioning livestock and aquaculture sectors’ and that the feed sector ‘holds a key’ in several prominent sustainability challenges.
Although GMP+ International is primarily in the business of enhancing and ensuring feed safety (GMP+ FSA), we also focus on supporting sustainability through our GMP+ Feed Responsibility Assurance (GMP+ FRA) module. This module was developed at the request of certified companies as a “one stop shop – multiple certification” solution. Launched in 2015, GMP+ FRA enables companies already certified for GMP+ FSA to show their clients they are working in a responsible way.
Responsible sourcing – especially of soybeans and soy products – plays an important role in this module, so we were happy to see sourcing included in FEFAC’s five ambitions. FEFAC also stresses, as part of its welfare ambition, ‘the need to further strengthen biosecurity along the whole livestock chain’.
At GMP+ International we have been looking into how we can facilitate companies to implement biosecurity measures via our GMP+ scheme. At our recent webinar leading up to the Global Feed Safety Summit in 2022, 74 percent of responding participants said in a poll they would like to see biosecurity included in GMP+ FSA. Despite that several elements of our scheme (PRPR’s and HACCP) can already be used to improve biosecurity at companies, we will be working with our partners to produce additional guidance on this important subject, including a scientific fact sheet on feed biosecurity hazards.
When it comes to reducing the carbon footprint of the sector – another of the charter’s lofty ambitions – we are currently looking into the possibility of a new standard for ensuring the accuracy and reliability of feed carbon footprint data. Besides that, we are currently in the final stage of defining a standard for regional sourcing of feed materials. We are planning to launch it mid-2021.
Along with our 18,000 certified companies we are looking forward to step up our game when it comes to tackling sustainability challenges. We believe FEFAC’s five ambitions form a clear roadmap to a future-proof feed industry – but it’s up to us all to make it happen.