Amazon’s European win
On December 5, the European Parliament and the Council (EU) reached agreement on a European Commission proposal for deforestation-free products. The new law will require companies to transparently track their goods throughout the supply chain. The list of products includes soybeans (used as feed for livestock), beef, and hides.
Back in 2021, the European Commission proposed banning a very limited list of commodities at risk of deforestation from entering the EU market, such as palm oil, wood, cocoa, coffee, beef, leather and major soy products. Last September, the European Parliament voted in favor of major amendments to the Commission’s proposal, such as expanding the list of products to include those from cows, pigs, chickens and sheep.
Yesterday, the (EU) Council and the European Parliament reached agreement on a final text that goes beyond the Commission’s proposals and includes other products such as rubber and palm oil derivatives, but unfortunately does not include animal products from soy-fed animals such as pigs, poultry, fish and sheep. The new regulations will only apply to forests; unfortunately, they do not cover other geographic areas, such as forested areas, savannas and wetlands.
Since the trade in animal products drives deforestation, the regulation holds promise for the planet and animals, as producers intending to export to the EU will be motivated to move to more sustainable production systems that are less damaging to wildlife and their habitats.
The regulation failed to take into account the role played by the livestock industry outside of beef production, excluding from its scope animal products from all soy-fed animals, as well as all other natural ecosystems damaged by EU soy consumption and imported animal products from soy-fed animals.