Bonsucro Impact Fund

Investing in innovative projects at sugarcane origins

The Bonsucro Impact Fund supports projects that address critical sustainability challenges in the sugarcane sector.

Using income from the Bonsucro Credit Trading Platform, our Fund offers our members the chance to apply for thematic grants for projects that catalyse sustainable sugarcane production.

Could we support your project?

The Bonsucro Impact Fund supports projects that:

Are collaborative and innovative

All proposed projects put forward must involve at least three organisations – the lead applicant must be a Bonsucro member, and the consortium must include multiple actors across the supply chain.

Demonstrate the potential for scale

While projects receiving an innovation grant (up to £50,000) may not impact a huge number of farmers or area of land, we’re looking for ideas that can be scaled up or replicated in other places. Impact projects (up to £150,000) should seek to effect a significant positive impact on those working directly in the sugarcane sector.

Take place in one of our priority countries

We are looking to create focused impact in origins that will help us achieve our strategic aims. The priority countries can be found in the “Calls for Proposals”.

Cross-cutting themes

For 2023 and 2024, we want to reflect the importance and cross-applicability of addressing gender inequality and supporting smallholder farmers. Therefore we will be prioritising projects that meaningfully address these chosen cross-cutting themes.

How it works

We publish “Calls for Proposals” on specific themes and invite our members to apply for grants through a competitive selection process. These themes are aligned with our strategy alongside the current challenges that our members are dealing with.

Because applying for grants can be time-consuming, we have a two-stage application process.

Stage 1 – the concept note

Applicants submit a short concept note outlining the project idea through our online form. The offline template can be found below in English, Spanish and Portuguese. These concept notes are evaluated by the Project Selection Committee.

If you are a Bonsucro member but are not able to proceed with your Access Request, please contact who will be able to assist by verifying your contact details.

Stage 2 – the full proposal

The Project Selection Committee will invite the most promising ideas to submit a full project proposal. The full proposal should address any concerns or issues raised by the Committee.

The full proposal includes a narrative proposal, a log frame, a workplan, and a proposed budget.

Once the successful projects have been selected, we may ask the applicant to make some final adjustments to their proposal and budget. The final negotiated proposal and budget will be used to form a grant agreement.

After the grants have been awarded

Bonsucro will request the selected applicant to complete our grantee’s due diligence questionnaire and provide the supporting documentation. All grant recipients are required to have completed all membership obligations and are expected to respect Bonsucro’s Code of Conduct.

Once the project is underway, we will ask for regular updates. Grantees will have quarterly check-in calls with the Impact Funding Manager and must submit progress reports every six months, culminating in a final project report once the project is complete.

As the project nears completion, we will work with the grantees to share and capture stories of change and their learnings. In 2024 the Bonsucro Impact Fund has allocation a proportion of its granting budget for follow-on funding. This follow-on funding will be given by invitation only, to grants awarded in 2022 which are coming to a close, but present a clear opportunity to extend impact and further learning.

Field day at a Bonsucro Impact Fund project in Brazil by Pulse Hub / Raízen and Arable. Credit: Arable

Where does the money come from?

The Bonsucro Impact Fund creates grants using income from the sale of Bonsucro Credits through our Credit Trading Platform. All trades are charged a transaction fee, around 50% of which is invested into the Bonsucro Impact Fund.

Bonsucro certified producers can sell credits for their sugarcane, raw sugar, ethanol, or molasses. Bonsucro members can purchase credits, whether they are certified against the Chain of Custody Standard or not. This allows buyers to achieve their sustainable sourcing goals while investing in sustainability projects at sugarcane origins.

Apply for a grant

There are no calls for proposals open at the moment but there will be more opportunities later in the year. 

If you have any questions about the Bonsucro Impact Fund, please email us at

Limited funding is also available for projects run by Bonsucro that our leadership team consider to be strategically important initiatives, which we could not otherwise support through the Calls for Proposals. The Project Selection Committee has the opportunity to comment on and validate the proposals submitted by staff before the approval of a grant.

There are no calls for proposals open right now

Projects supported by the Fund

Smallholder projects
Climate action and water stewardship projects
Human rights and decent work projects

Monitoring, evaluation, and learning

In 2022 and 2023, we have been supported by SOAS as our monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) partner for the fund. Academics from SOAS have been working with academics from the Brazilian Centre for Analysis and Planning and have developed a MEL framework, strategy and support package for grantees.

From 2024 onwards, Bonsucro will be providing MEL support to grantees through our Monitoring and Impact team. Our MEL team is available to support grantees on all aspects of monitoring the progress of their project. They will be on hand to ensure a robust MEL plan and baselines are put in place at the beginning of the project.

The MEL team will also continue to support grantees in sharing their experiences, best practice in terms of what has worked for them.