Competere endorses the Tropical Forest Alliance’s manifesto and join the collective coalition paper on EU deforestation policiesA PROPOSAL FOR A ‘SMART MIX’ OF MEASURES TO PREVENT DEFORESTATION

Industry, civil society call on the EU to adopt a smart mix of measures to address deforestation

Competere joins a large and growing group of nearly 50 companies, NGOs and industry bodies call on the EU to adopt a smart mix of measures to address imported deforestation. This progressive group, comprising some of the largest manufacturers, retailers, traders and producers of forest-risk commodities and their associations, together with international civil society organizations, jointly endorsed a collective position paper, facilitated by the Tropical Forest Alliance.

Together the endorsers call for a set of mutually reinforcing interventions for the European Commission to consider as the body proposes legislation to protect and restore the world’s forests. The suggested measures include producer partnerships, demand-side interventions incl. due diligence, dialogue with other consumer countries, sustainable finance and investment and robust verification systems.


A ‘smart mix’ of measures by the EU is necessary to help tackle the negative impacts on forests associated with the production of forest risk commodities, including:

  • Partnerships between the EU and producer countries to put in place the enabling conditions necessary to protect forests and improve the standards of production of agricultural commodities;
  • EU legislation to introduce an obligation of due diligence on companies involved in commodity supply chains, and to put in place other demand-side measures to support markets for sustainably produced commodities;
  • Dialogue with other consumer countries, to ensure that stricter standards in the EU market do not simply divert unsustainably produced products away to other markets;
  • Measures to steer flows of finance and investment away from unsustainable and towards sustainable activities and supply chains;
  • Encouragement for robust, consistent and practical systems and approaches to enable companies to assess, verify and report on risk and risk mitigation within their supply chains;
  • This is the conclusion of a large and growing group of companies from across the supply chain, and NGOs, that participated in the Tropical Forest Alliance’s series of roundtable discussions on action to protect forests held between April and July 2020.

The Tropical Forest Alliance recognises the role of the EU, as one of the world’s largest importers and consumers of almost all the major forest risk commodities, in driving deforestation. We applaud the publication, in July 2019, of the European Commission’s communication on ‘Stepping up EU Action to Protect and Restore the World’s Forests’, and we welcome the opportunity to contribute to the impact assessment of demand-side measures currently under way. We look forward to the publication of proposals for an ambitious smart mix of measures at the conclusion of this exercise.


To combat climate change, protect biodiversity and sustain the livelihoods of farmers and forest communities, the EU and its member states must take action to reduce and eventually eliminate these pressures on forests. The Tropical Forest Alliance proposes here a ‘smart mix’ of mutually reinforcing measures aimed at addressing the drivers of deforestation and involving all stakeholders – governments, businesses, NGOs and citizens of the EU and producer countries – in ambitious action.


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