ROSARIO, ARGENTINA — COFCO International Argentina loaded 18,000 tonnes of certified deforestation-free soymeal at its Timbúes port terminal on the Parana River near Rosario, the company’s first fully traceable and segregated soy shipment aligned with the upcoming EU Regulation on Deforestation-free products (EUDR).

The beans and processed meal are assured to be free from recent deforestation and have been segregated since harvesting to ensure no blending with non-certified produce. Loaded May 16 on the MV Dublin Eagle, the cargo will be delivered to R&H Hall, Ireland’s largest feed manufacturer. 

This deforestation-free soymeal shipment, along with previous shipments of deforestation-free soybean to China, are important steps to the company meeting its commitments to achieve deforestation and conversion-free soy supply chains in upcoming years and reduce emissions from land use change, COFCO said.

“Thanks to early industry and government investments in Argentina’s Visec monitoring platform, which was developed to reduce the cost of traceability and serve the country’s entire soy chain, the country is now well-placed to supply Europe with EUDR-compliant soybeans, meal and related products,” COFCO said.

Visec is expected to cover all soy supply coming out of Argentina by the end of 2024, including intermediaries such as cooperatives, making it the first country to show it is ready to fully comply with the EUDR, according to COFCO. 

This shipment follows other sustainable soy shipments that have utilized the mass-balance model in which the certified products and non-certified products are mixed together somewhere in transit or production of the end product. The segregated model applied to this shipment requires the certified produce to be physically separated from non-certified produce throughout the whole supply chain.

The EUDR entered into force in 2023 and will start to apply on Dec. 30, 2024. The regulation is aimed at promoting the consumption of deforestation-free products within the EU and therefore bring down greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss. 

Under the EUDR, any operator or trader who places commodities, including soy, palm oil, coffee, cattle, cocoa, wood and rubber or derived products on the EU market, or exports from it, must be able to prove that the products do not originate from land deforested since 2020 or have contributed to forest degradation.

COFCO International has set new sustainability goals that reflect an increased ambition to address deforestation, climate and human rights, the company said in its recently published 2023 Sustainability Report that discloses its progress on the environmental, social and governance issues.

COFCO International is the overseas agriculture business platform for COFCO Corp., China’s largest food and agriculture company. COFCO International is focused on the global grains, oilseeds, sugar, coffee and cotton supply chains, with assets in 36 countries across the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific.