BRUSSELS, BELGIUM — The European Compound Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC) on Sept. 7 published its second Sustainability Charter Progress Report, providing an overview of the past year on FEFAC activities and deliverables in relation to the five ambitions that were included in the FEFAC Feed Sustainability Charter 2030 released in September 2020.

FEFAC noted that these ambitions jointly provide a comprehensive approach on how the European feed industry can contribute to the development of more sustainable livestock and aquaculture value chains.

 Among the highlights was the publication “Circular Feed — Optimized Nutrient Recovery Through Animal Nutrition” in June 2022, which includes an invitation to regulators to proceed with a systematic review of legislative bottlenecks in the EU regulatory framework to facilitate a higher level of circularity in EU food systems through innovative animal nutrition solutions.

 The report notes the importance of increasing the focus on Ambition V on the socio-economic environment and resilience of the livestock and aquaculture sectors in view of the severe conditions faced by the livestock sector, which endured the exacerbating effect of the Ukraine crisis of a global market rally for feed grains, which already started at the end of 2021. 

FEFAC said all recent events show that the sustainability of the food system is highly complex and requires a truly holistic approach, integrating the resilience of EU agri-food systems and food security impacts as well as climate change and biodiversity targets

“The EU needs to draw the right lessons from the Ukraine crisis, which clearly sets the priority on increasing the EU’s energy autonomy, but this must be done without undermining EU and global feed and food autonomy’s objectives,” FEFAC said.

Asbjørn Børsting, president of FEFAC, said: “We will need to foster a mentality change in the whole supply chain to prevent unintended consequences linked to the implementation of sustainability agendas, which could further exacerbate the EU’s import dependency on critical agricultural inputs undermining resilience and food security targets.

“At the same time, we are fully aware that we cannot afford to ‘slow down’ our joint efforts on making our economies and food systems more sustainable, for example by boosting circular economy approaches.” 

In addition to linking up with the UN SDGs and Green Deal Objectives, the individual ambition chapters now also include references to the aspirational targets of the EU Code of Conduct for Responsible Business & Marketing Practices, of which FEFAC is a signatory.