SINGAPORE — Cargill on Oct. 9 hosted an event, Supply Chain Matters 2015, to address the importance of sustainability across the food and agriculture supply chains, the challenges businesses are facing to integrate sustainability into their business agendas and the opportunities ahead in the Asia Pacific region.

Singapore Minister of Trade & Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang and Dave MacLennan, Cargill chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) opened the session with keynote speeches, followed by a panel discussion hosted by leading industry leaders. Panel members include MacLennan; Olam Co-Founder, Group MD & CEO Sunny Verghese; NTUC Fairprice Co-operative CEO (Singapore) Seah Kian Peng; and WWF SVP (Sustainable Food) David McLaughlin. The panel discussion was moderated by NTU Senior Fellow (Food security) Professor Paul Teng.

Participants ranged from business entrepreneurs in Asia, corporate business leaders, government officials to non-government organizations.

“We wanted to bring together stakeholders across the food and agriculture supply chains, including our peers and our customers,” said MacLennan. “We all play a crucial part in the value chain and need to work together if we are going to be successful.”

In 2015, Cargill began developing a new sustainability roadmap for Cargill, focusing on four specific areas where the company believes it can make a strong and positive impact. These four areas are land use (including deforestation), water use, climate change and farmer livelihoods. Cargill works closely with its customers and partners to ensure the sustainability journey is factored into the business.

"Sustainability is at the center of our business agenda,” said Dhaval Buch, chief procurement officer at Unilever. “One of the reasons we have made so much progress in sustainability is because we work with partners like Cargill, who share similar intent, who have similar ambitions, and who have similar capabilities across a wider spectrum of the supply chain."

“We are in a unique position thanks to our 150 years of experience and leadership in food and agriculture, our breadth of solutions and services, and our ability to take a long term view of the industry to ensure that our customers continue to grow and succeed alongside us for the next 150 years,” MacLennan said.