Deforestation is front and centre, here’s a round up, and some thoughts on the way forward

The Economist cover this week is titled “Deathwatch for the Amazon”. You may imagine what it says. For example: “In the tropics, which contain half of the world’s forest biomass, tree-cover loss has accelerated by two-thirds since 2015; if it were a country, the shrinkage would make the tropical rainforest the world’s third-biggest carbon-dioxide emitter,…

Deforestation as finance climate risk – key stats and progress, of sorts

The Chain Reaction Research newsletter, published by Climate Advisors, recently highlighted deforestation as a financial risk. Their recent note makes for interesting and useful reading: The Chain: Deforestation as a Climate Risk for Investors Here’s a few choice excerpts which include some helpful framing numbers: “Approximately 70 percent of deforestation is connected to agricultural commodity…

Sustainable socks, and other insights from brands, innovators and experts

We’ve shifted over to our new website at Innovation Forum. It’s much easier to find your way around now. Check it out here. Now, you can browse and listen/read by a number of categories. For example: If you want to delve into some business innovation analysis, go here. But if its brand and other expert…

Is sustainable intensification a myth or an inevitability?

This is a key question for the future of food, some materials and even some fuels. According to at least one academic journal, the term is ill-defined, and lacks accepted guidelines. The recent Sainsbury’s funded report, on the future of food, quoted in the Guardian, claims that: “Jellyfish suppers washed down with algae milk and…

Our 2019 meeting agenda: Human rights, apparel, the future of food, positive impact measurement, biofuels, plastics and commodities

Here’s some of the upcoming meetings we at Innovation Forum have put together April – November 2019. We’ve got a couple more in the pipeline and I’ll post about those soon. How business can tackle modern slavery and forced labour – 2-3 April – London Sustainable Apparel and Textiles Conference – 9-10 April 2019 –…

Can Cannabis become legal, and sustainable?

Toby Shillito, CEO of Sunshine Labs, a provider of legal Cannabis flowers and derivatives based in Europe, reflects on what it will take to make cannabis sustainable, as well as legal Prohibition has prevented the normal growth of corporate social responsibility issues in the Cannabis industry. With prohibition in retreat, there are emerging opportunities for…

Some festive reading and listening, from wine sustainability, to deforestation, plastics and modern slavery

I know I know, it’s the festive season, so who wants to get bogged down with serious sustainability stuff? But I know many of you, like me, get bored of less important things after a few days rest, and want to read more about our favourite subject, how to make the world (more) sustainable. So…

Some thoughts after our recent sustainable landscapes conference (now updated)

A couple of weeks ago we held our first sustainable landscapes conference in London. It was a combination of conferences and a culmination of four years work in some ways. We merged our smallholders, deforestation and elements of our agriculture conferences together and somehow it worked. Huge thanks to our many sponsors and supporters of…

How can palm oil companies help create sustainable rural communities? Here’s some ideas

A few months back, I facilitated a session with Goetz in Accra, Ghana, at the TFA 2020 conference, on rural sustainability initiatives that will scale. It was a fascinating 45 minutes or so, and his company, *Golden-Agri Resources, seems to me to be leading the way, with a few others, in this area. The evolution in…

The sustainable soy story

Here’s our take on the latest in and around Soy sustainability. Proud to work with colleagues Ian Welsh and Tom Idle on this piece, although I must say I had little to do with it, other than suggesting we go more in-depth than the usual 500 words. Tom and Ian have delivered some excellent analysis…

21 key issues in…Sustainable commodities sourcing and landscape approaches to sustainability

Following my previous posts: “The ten most important issues in…business and plastic pollution/innovation“ and “The 13 most important issues in…business, modern slavery, forced labour and human rights” let’s move on to the topic of sustainable commodities sourcing and landscape approaches to sustainability. So here’s what our research came up with as some of the key issues…

Information age: the role of transparency in spreading best practice in commodity production

By Chris Eves, forestry officer at the Zoological Society of London Speaking recently, Christophe Deloire, secretary general of Reporters Without Borders, stated that: “None of the main issues which humanity is facing will be resolved without access to information”. With 2017 the second worst year on record for tropical tree cover loss, now is a good…

Podcast frenzy & lots of no-cost insight, from human rights, to strategy, to sustainable landscapes

I haven’t posted on here for a while. We’ve been busy publishing on the main Innovation Forum site, which has hugely increased traffic in the last few months. We think this is due to our audio content, which is proving extremely popular, we think because a) its pretty good and b) its a flexible format…

Sustainability-related trade wars, some useful Palm Oil stats/factoids and food companies and deforestation

Trade “wars” (actually skirmishes) are all over the news at the moment. Alongside the political posturing of Trump and his economically-unhinged cohorts, there may be, as mentioned before on this blog, a sustainability-related one brewing too. I’m referring, of course to palm oil, the EU and deforestation. This headline from the Asia Times gives you…

Deforestation-free supply chains: Four trends to watch

Chris Meyer from the Environmental Defense Fund has put together an insightful blog post on the above topic, which is particularly timely, given this week is the TFA 2020 AGM in Accra, Ghana, where I am moderating a panel session on scaling up zero deforestation initiates, with speakers from Golden Agri Resources and Mondelez. I’ve…