15th December 2022
Australia plays an important role in the regional and global sugarcane industry, with a cultivated area of around 355,000 ha and a yearly production in 2020 of approximately 31 million tonnes of sugarcane. While relatively small in terms of global production, Australia is the world’s fourth largest exporter of raw sugar, with approximately 80% of production sold to international markets. The major cane-producing area of Australia, Queensland, is characterised by low rainfall and irrigated areas along coastal plains and river valleys, with proximity to the Great Barrier Reef – an environmentally fragile area. Australia has a culture of effective environmental and social and business regulation, guided by science and best practice and ranks relatively high on the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (18/180). As such, it is generally considered to be an environment where levels of enforcement and compliance with statutory requirements are high.
It is in this context that Australia has been a key country for Bonsucro for the last 15 years, working together with the sugarcane sector towards a more sustainable value chain end to end. Currently, Bonsucro’s membership in Australia is comprised of mills, farmers, farmer associations, refineries, and retailers, many of whom have been strong supporters of our platform from the beginning.
While the case for voluntary sustainability standards in the sugarcane industry is clearly accepted, the high level of statutory regulation, and enforcement and compliance with those regulations, suggests that there is potential to build on this foundation by establishing a benchmark between applicable laws to the sugarcane sector and the Bonsucro Production Standard which has the potential to streamline and simplify the audit and certification process.
To do that, Bonsucro wishes to commission a consultant, team of consultants, or consultancy agency to benchmark our Production Standard version 5.1 against national and state regulations to identify which criteria are covered by the laws applicable to the sugar cane in Australia, and how compliance with Production Standard can be demonstrated to auditors and certification bodies, using official documentation or evidence provided by official entities.
As Bonsucro recognises the importance of contextualisation of the standard, it is also the intention to use this study as a model that can be replicated, if useful and impactful, in different origins.
Deadline for submission of proposals is 31 January 2023. Please submit your proposals to email@example.com.