August 16, 2023
August 15, 2023
4
Min Read

The Business Case for Sustainable, Deforestation-Free Beef and Leather

Sustainable Beef & Leather Supply Chains
Blog

    The Sustainable Leather and Beef Guide

    • The EU’s recent deforestation-free regulation (EUDR) requires companies sourcing beef/leather to prove that their supply chains do not contribute to forest degradation or destruction.
    • Under these due diligence updates, beef companies and suppliers will have to trace their beef and related byproducts down to the source to prove compliance.
    • To achieve truly sustainable sourcing and audit-proof compliance, beef companies and suppliers should consider implementing supply chain traceability initiatives.

    Given recent deforestation-free supply chain laws, companies sourcing beef and leather can no longer afford to delay supply traceability and data-backed proof of sourcing compliance.

    In this piece, we'll walk you through how to audit-proof your beef or leather supply chain, track and report on essential data, and choose the ideal solution and implementation partner to make everything seamless and powerful.

    What is sustainable beef/leather?

    Sustainable beef and leather are sourced in a way that is environmentally, socially, and economically friendly. More specifically, sustainable leather and beef consider the welfare of the animals, employees, and land impacted throughout the entire beef/leather value chain - from cow/calf to retail/storefront to byproducts (i.e. leather handbag).

    Traditional beef sourcing and byproducts contribute to unnecessary waste, deforestation, soil degradation, and carbon emissions. So much so that some experts believe the only way to achieve sustainable beef is to not only lessen its carbon footprint through regenerative ranching and ensure the welfare of animals, employees, and land but also to reduce our consumption of beef altogether. However, as global demand for animal protein is expected to rise by a third over the next 20 years, sustainable cattle and beef farming is the most realistic solution for both people and the planet. Particularly in low-income countries, beef is a huge source of nutrition and protein.

    Many organizations exist worldwide to help achieve and support sustainable beef farming and ranching, from the US to Australia to Brazil to Canada and almost everywhere in between. Until recently, though, there have been new official compliance regulations of such magnitude - and financial consequences - requiring granular data to prove sustainable sourcing. The EUDR is at the forefront, increasing scrutiny on beef and leather supply chains for auditable proof of provenance and environmental impact. 

    The business benefits - and common challenges - of sustainable beef/leather.

    The common challenges of sourcing sustainable beef/leather:

    • High GHG emissions: Cattle are the number one contributor to greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Cattle-rearing is also a major source of land and water degradation, deforestation, poor soil health, and overgrazing. The biggest challenge to sustainable beef and byproducts is accounting for and tracking these large emissions throughout the entire value chain. From there, groups can see how they can reduce or offset emissions.
    • Source-level invisibility: Like any value chain, beef sourcing is complex. The beef supply chain typically begins at the cow/calf level, to the feed yard, then the auction market, the packer & processor, and retail/food service. Many brands (understandably) have little visibility into where their meat or byproducts originate - the farm their beef/leather came from, the exact cow/calf. Under the EUDR, this source-level invisibility makes it impossible to prove whether or not your sourcing contributed to deforestation/overgrazing.
    • Lack of resources: Another common challenge to more sustainable beef sourcing is a lack of educational, financial, and technological resources. Not all brands or suppliers know where or how to begin their sustainability/compliance journey. Nor do they always have the financial means to invest in regenerative ranching practices or have the right technology to track and implement decarbonization initiatives. 

    The benefits of sourcing sustainable beef/leather:

    • Quality assurance: Holistically, sustainable beef production prioritizes animal health and well-being, uses antibiotics judiciously, and provides unprocessed protein options to consumers. From a supplier or brand perspective, strategically sourcing sustainable beef - particularly with a traceability solution - will help you consistently produce the level of quality you hope to provide to customers.
    • Sustainability proof: Due to beef sourcing’s strong linkage to carbon emissions and deforestation, data-driven proof of sustainability down to the source will help future-proof your business. Meaning, in order to prove compliance and avoid fines and reputational damage, beef suppliers and brands will have to be able to prove and trace the sustainability of their beef and byproducts down to the plot of land where it was produced.
    • Auditable compliance: Related to sustainability proof is auditable compliance. Meaning, the ability to not only prove your sustainability but to have the chain of custody data throughout your entire beef supply chain to ensure your operations are audit-proof. Historically, companies have relied on third-party spot audits and high-level shipping data to prove sustainability compliance and claims. However, these tactics no longer cut it to meet EUDR requirements. Truly sustainable sourcing backed by verifiable, real-time data will power your company to be audit-proof.

    How to achieve beef sourcing compliance.

    Sustainable Beef EUDR Compliance Supply Chain
    EUDR Compliance for Beef Diagram
    1. Map your beef supply chain down to the source (farm and/or calf/cow) to ensure complete visibility. Proving your compliance will require visibility all the way down to the cattle ranch. Most enterprise beef companies are familiar with their supplier or packer/processor, but few have the deep visibility required to protect their operations in the coming years. 
    1. Ensure you can track the source-level, geo-coordinates of origin required to prove your compliance. Knowledge is king, but only if it’s backed by reliable data! Once you've gained visibility of your entire supply chain, ensure you capture the data you need at the source level to prove compliance. This tactic will require the exact geo-coordinates of the ranch, in addition to any decarbonization metrics, to prove that the cattle ranch isn’t contributing to deforestation. Traceability solutions - such as BanQu’s solutions - can make capturing and reporting on this data much simpler.
    1. Partner with a traceability and implementation expert to support you with your sourcing compliance journey. Achieving sourcing compliance is no small feat, so choosing an experienced partner that can help you with supply chain mapping to traceability implementation to data/reporting will make your sourcing compliance journey as efficient and beneficial as possible. 

    Choose a few traceability partners and evaluate them by the criteria below to assess if they’re the right fit for your business and goals. This is something we can do fo you.

    How to choose the perfect traceability partner for beef sourcing compliance.

    Supply traceability - to the cattle ranch level - is the first significant step to achieving beef sourcing sustainability and compliance. However, getting started can be a significant hurdle. Choosing a trustworthy traceability partner to help you implement the right strategy, and software, and gain reliable data is key.

    As you evaluate the perfect traceability partner for your beef/leather business, ensure this partner can provide you with:

    1. Visibility down to the geolocated farm/calf/cow ID. Mapping your supply chain down to the source is not without its challenges. Finding a partner that can help you gain visibility down to the exact geolocated origins of your beef source is crucial to kickstarting your compliance journey and audit-proofing your business.
    1. Data capture along the entire chain of custody from calf/cow to byproduct. To move beyond unreliable high-level shipping data and spot audits, the ability to capture supply chain data along the entire chain of custody is key to proving decarbonization and sustainability efforts. This data capture must also include tracking the beef source from calf/cow to byproduct and every step in between, even when there’s a transformation (e.g., whole cow to disassembled meat). Finding a traceability partner that can help you achieve this granularity will help you ensure compliance.
    1. Real-time reporting on regenerative ranching and decarbonization. Last, but certainly not least, partner with an expert team that can provide you with real-time data and reporting on climate measures throughout your entire supply chain. The real-time piece will ensure your numbers are as up-to-date (and compliant!) as possible, and it allows you to remain agile in quickly multi-solving any supply chain disruptions, supplier issues, or egregious carbon emissions.

    Truly sustainable sourcing, with BanQu

    BanQu is an end-to-end supply chain compliance software that helps brands and suppliers around the world track their sustainability and ensure compliance. With real-time data down to your cow/calf or ranch, BanQu can help beef suppliers and brands track carbon offsets, gain cow-to-byproduct visibility, prove sustainability, and achieve audit-proof EUDR compliance. Schedule a free demo with the BanQu team to see how they can help you achieve your sustainable beef sourcing goals and compliance!

    Download The Business Case for Sustainable, Deforestation-Free Beef and Leather

    Given recent deforestation-free supply chain laws, companies sourcing beef and leather can no longer afford to delay supply traceability and data-backed proof of sourcing compliance.

    Download the Guide

    Resources
    The Business Case for Sustainable, Deforestation-Free Beef and Leather

      The Sustainable Leather and Beef Guide

      • The EU’s recent deforestation-free regulation (EUDR) requires companies sourcing beef/leather to prove that their supply chains do not contribute to forest degradation or destruction.
      • Under these due diligence updates, beef companies and suppliers will have to trace their beef and related byproducts down to the source to prove compliance.
      • To achieve truly sustainable sourcing and audit-proof compliance, beef companies and suppliers should consider implementing supply chain traceability initiatives.

      Given recent deforestation-free supply chain laws, companies sourcing beef and leather can no longer afford to delay supply traceability and data-backed proof of sourcing compliance.

      In this piece, we'll walk you through how to audit-proof your beef or leather supply chain, track and report on essential data, and choose the ideal solution and implementation partner to make everything seamless and powerful.

      What is sustainable beef/leather?

      Sustainable beef and leather are sourced in a way that is environmentally, socially, and economically friendly. More specifically, sustainable leather and beef consider the welfare of the animals, employees, and land impacted throughout the entire beef/leather value chain - from cow/calf to retail/storefront to byproducts (i.e. leather handbag).

      Traditional beef sourcing and byproducts contribute to unnecessary waste, deforestation, soil degradation, and carbon emissions. So much so that some experts believe the only way to achieve sustainable beef is to not only lessen its carbon footprint through regenerative ranching and ensure the welfare of animals, employees, and land but also to reduce our consumption of beef altogether. However, as global demand for animal protein is expected to rise by a third over the next 20 years, sustainable cattle and beef farming is the most realistic solution for both people and the planet. Particularly in low-income countries, beef is a huge source of nutrition and protein.

      Many organizations exist worldwide to help achieve and support sustainable beef farming and ranching, from the US to Australia to Brazil to Canada and almost everywhere in between. Until recently, though, there have been new official compliance regulations of such magnitude - and financial consequences - requiring granular data to prove sustainable sourcing. The EUDR is at the forefront, increasing scrutiny on beef and leather supply chains for auditable proof of provenance and environmental impact. 

      The business benefits - and common challenges - of sustainable beef/leather.

      The common challenges of sourcing sustainable beef/leather:

      • High GHG emissions: Cattle are the number one contributor to greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Cattle-rearing is also a major source of land and water degradation, deforestation, poor soil health, and overgrazing. The biggest challenge to sustainable beef and byproducts is accounting for and tracking these large emissions throughout the entire value chain. From there, groups can see how they can reduce or offset emissions.
      • Source-level invisibility: Like any value chain, beef sourcing is complex. The beef supply chain typically begins at the cow/calf level, to the feed yard, then the auction market, the packer & processor, and retail/food service. Many brands (understandably) have little visibility into where their meat or byproducts originate - the farm their beef/leather came from, the exact cow/calf. Under the EUDR, this source-level invisibility makes it impossible to prove whether or not your sourcing contributed to deforestation/overgrazing.
      • Lack of resources: Another common challenge to more sustainable beef sourcing is a lack of educational, financial, and technological resources. Not all brands or suppliers know where or how to begin their sustainability/compliance journey. Nor do they always have the financial means to invest in regenerative ranching practices or have the right technology to track and implement decarbonization initiatives. 

      The benefits of sourcing sustainable beef/leather:

      • Quality assurance: Holistically, sustainable beef production prioritizes animal health and well-being, uses antibiotics judiciously, and provides unprocessed protein options to consumers. From a supplier or brand perspective, strategically sourcing sustainable beef - particularly with a traceability solution - will help you consistently produce the level of quality you hope to provide to customers.
      • Sustainability proof: Due to beef sourcing’s strong linkage to carbon emissions and deforestation, data-driven proof of sustainability down to the source will help future-proof your business. Meaning, in order to prove compliance and avoid fines and reputational damage, beef suppliers and brands will have to be able to prove and trace the sustainability of their beef and byproducts down to the plot of land where it was produced.
      • Auditable compliance: Related to sustainability proof is auditable compliance. Meaning, the ability to not only prove your sustainability but to have the chain of custody data throughout your entire beef supply chain to ensure your operations are audit-proof. Historically, companies have relied on third-party spot audits and high-level shipping data to prove sustainability compliance and claims. However, these tactics no longer cut it to meet EUDR requirements. Truly sustainable sourcing backed by verifiable, real-time data will power your company to be audit-proof.

      How to achieve beef sourcing compliance.

      Sustainable Beef EUDR Compliance Supply Chain
      EUDR Compliance for Beef Diagram
      1. Map your beef supply chain down to the source (farm and/or calf/cow) to ensure complete visibility. Proving your compliance will require visibility all the way down to the cattle ranch. Most enterprise beef companies are familiar with their supplier or packer/processor, but few have the deep visibility required to protect their operations in the coming years. 
      1. Ensure you can track the source-level, geo-coordinates of origin required to prove your compliance. Knowledge is king, but only if it’s backed by reliable data! Once you've gained visibility of your entire supply chain, ensure you capture the data you need at the source level to prove compliance. This tactic will require the exact geo-coordinates of the ranch, in addition to any decarbonization metrics, to prove that the cattle ranch isn’t contributing to deforestation. Traceability solutions - such as BanQu’s solutions - can make capturing and reporting on this data much simpler.
      1. Partner with a traceability and implementation expert to support you with your sourcing compliance journey. Achieving sourcing compliance is no small feat, so choosing an experienced partner that can help you with supply chain mapping to traceability implementation to data/reporting will make your sourcing compliance journey as efficient and beneficial as possible. 

      Choose a few traceability partners and evaluate them by the criteria below to assess if they’re the right fit for your business and goals. This is something we can do fo you.

      How to choose the perfect traceability partner for beef sourcing compliance.

      Supply traceability - to the cattle ranch level - is the first significant step to achieving beef sourcing sustainability and compliance. However, getting started can be a significant hurdle. Choosing a trustworthy traceability partner to help you implement the right strategy, and software, and gain reliable data is key.

      As you evaluate the perfect traceability partner for your beef/leather business, ensure this partner can provide you with:

      1. Visibility down to the geolocated farm/calf/cow ID. Mapping your supply chain down to the source is not without its challenges. Finding a partner that can help you gain visibility down to the exact geolocated origins of your beef source is crucial to kickstarting your compliance journey and audit-proofing your business.
      1. Data capture along the entire chain of custody from calf/cow to byproduct. To move beyond unreliable high-level shipping data and spot audits, the ability to capture supply chain data along the entire chain of custody is key to proving decarbonization and sustainability efforts. This data capture must also include tracking the beef source from calf/cow to byproduct and every step in between, even when there’s a transformation (e.g., whole cow to disassembled meat). Finding a traceability partner that can help you achieve this granularity will help you ensure compliance.
      1. Real-time reporting on regenerative ranching and decarbonization. Last, but certainly not least, partner with an expert team that can provide you with real-time data and reporting on climate measures throughout your entire supply chain. The real-time piece will ensure your numbers are as up-to-date (and compliant!) as possible, and it allows you to remain agile in quickly multi-solving any supply chain disruptions, supplier issues, or egregious carbon emissions.

      Truly sustainable sourcing, with BanQu

      BanQu is an end-to-end supply chain compliance software that helps brands and suppliers around the world track their sustainability and ensure compliance. With real-time data down to your cow/calf or ranch, BanQu can help beef suppliers and brands track carbon offsets, gain cow-to-byproduct visibility, prove sustainability, and achieve audit-proof EUDR compliance. Schedule a free demo with the BanQu team to see how they can help you achieve your sustainable beef sourcing goals and compliance!

      Speakers
      Thank you! We'll be in contact shortly.
      Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

      Related Resources

      July 8, 2024
      1
      min read
      BanQu for EPR & Circularity
      July 8, 2024
      1
      min read
      BanQu for Carbon Regulations
      Sneak peek of how BanQu can help your company keep up with carbon accounting regulations.
      July 8, 2024
      1
      min read
      BanQu for CSDDD & CSRD
      Quick overview of how BanQu supports supply chain due diligence & sustainability reporting.

      Download The Business Case for Sustainable, Deforestation-Free Beef and Leather

      Given recent deforestation-free supply chain laws, companies sourcing beef and leather can no longer afford to delay supply traceability and data-backed proof of sourcing compliance.

      Download the Guide

      Curious how BanQu’s platform might help your company?

      CHAT WITH US