Dr Chris Bartram

Responsible sourcing of soy and palm

Mole Valley Farmers Is the first to financially support responsible sourcing of soy and palm

Farmers buying compounds and blends from Mole Valley Farmers can be assured they’re doing their bit for the environment thanks to a commitment from the company to financially support responsible sourcing of soy and palm.

The British, farmer-owned business is soon to become a full member of the Round Table on Responsible Soy Association (RTRS) and Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).

This will mean that from October 2021, for every tonne of soy or palm they buy for use in compounds or blends, additional purchased ‘credits’ will be put towards the production of responsibly grown crops. This will encourage zero deforestation, good agricultural practices and responsible labour conditions. All additional costs will be absorbed by Mole Valley Farmers meaning there will be no impact on the cost per tonne at the farm gate.

Dr Chris Bartram, Head of Nutrition for Mole Valley Farmers, believes the business is the first in the UK ruminant feed sector to make such a commitment.

“This is just one step we’re taking to help farmers meet environmental sustainability targets,” he says. “It’s important that the whole feed supply chain works together to promote responsible production of soy and palm considering the potential impact these feeds may have on the environment.”

At present, it is practically difficult to segregate responsibly sourced soy and palm from non-responsibly grown crops. However, as more companies buy RTRS and RSPO credits, the expectation is that more crops will be grown in an environmentally conscious way. This should mean that full segregation is feasible in 5-6 year’s time.

Dr Bartram adds: “In the mean time, farmers can be confident that they are contributing to the long-term production of responsibly grown soy and palm when they feed our compounds and blends. Alternatively, if they don’t want to feed soy and palm, they can choose from our existing range of no palm, no soy products.”

Mole Valley Farmers is also actively incorporating more home-produced feed products - such as beans and rape - into their compounds and blends. They are also working closely with the food industry to utilise more by-products, such as biscuit meal, which have a lower carbon footprint.

All of this work sits alongside existing steps taken by the business to help agriculture and the environment. This includes:
• Understanding the carbon footprint of every feed ingredient delivered to their mills
• The ability to determine the nitrogen and methane impact of different diets using their Precision Nutrition rationing programme
• Launching Great British Feeds, which include feeds grown in Britain as the main ingredients
• Working to reduce the carbon footprint of their feed mills.

For more information, contact The Feed & Nutritionists Line on 01278 444829 or [email protected]