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Updates to Principle 5 of the Bonsucro Production Standard

The last principle of the Bonsucro Production Standard to be updated is the principle 5. It is noteworthy that this is literally the last principle to be presented in the version 5.1, but in the version 4.2 the beginning would still remain 6. In both versions, the principle is “Continuously improve other key areas of activities”.

The changes already start in the criterion 5.1, presented as “Promoting economic and social sustainability”, which is considered as a criterion 5.9 in the previous version (v4.2), but prioritizing only economic sustainability. They are similar in the indicator “value added per ton of sugarcane”, that evaluates sales value, minus the price of products, raw material (including energy) and services purchased. In the current version, some points are still addressed, such as that the operator must have in place a research plan that covers innovation and research, continuous improvement and biosecurity; environmental and social management plans updated every two years; internal and external audit processes, etc.

“Reduce emissions and effluents and promote the recycling of waste categories” is the criterion 5.2 of the current version. Presents indicators that aim to align ambient air quality with WHO guidance (for non-emissions from batteries and establishing an annual average for PM, SO2 e NO2) and promote the safe disposal and recycling of non-production waste, for the operator to implement a safe and responsible recycling/reuse/disposal or storage program (if other options are not available) for all of the following categories: fiber, metal, plastic, oil and lubricants, batteries and chemicals, eraser, madeira, hazardous waste, glass and electronics.

The criterion 5.3 is now “Train employees and other workers in all areas of their work and develop their general skills”, which in v4.2 was the criteria 5.1. The focus has not changed, still stuck with operators providing workers with vocational or occupational skills training; it is also emphasized that if mechanization plans displace permanent and seasonal workers, vocational training is provided to certify workers in labor camps. Training certifications can be developed in collaboration with educational institutions, government agencies, international NGOs, development banks and other partners to provide legitimate certification of skills acquisition. The training is standardized with duration of 16 hours per year.

The last, although, no less important criterion of the version 5.1 of the Bonsucro Production Standard is the 5.4, the “Continuous improvement of worker well-being”, referring back to social sustainability. In this, the importance is with occupational health and safety throughout the sugarcane supply area. The operator undertakes to promote a safe working environment in its sugarcane supply base. There is also priority regarding safe accommodation for workers in the sugarcane supply area., in which the certified society must promote minimum legal standards of accommodation in its sugarcane supply base.

Inclusion of gender in the Production Standard

so nature is systemic and not linear, the inclusion of gender in technical and management positions, applying to all workers on the premises of the mill and farms included in the unit of certification. The operator will carry out women's empowerment at the community level. Recruitment operations increase women's presence in the workforce to meet the targets set by the operation of no less than 15% of the total workforce.

The participation of women in the labor market has grown – and the numbers are proof of that.. In 2007, for example, they represented 40,8% the formal labor market. Already in 2016, started to occupy 44% of vacancies. Female representation is the defense of a more egalitarian society, in the search for the guarantee of rights and in the creation of diversified female role models that can serve as inspiration for other girls and women. Thus, It is of great importance the positioning of companies, especially when they take an attitude like the one mentioned above, directly benefiting women who aspire to be in this market and influencing other companies to act in this way, bringing more justice and equality to the most important areas of society.

This is original BiO3 content. To find out more about the Bonsucro Standard updates and the work done by biO3, like where and how we act, access here. For questions or suggestions, contact us.