So much of the food industry is innovating to improve sustainability in their product supply chains from farm to fork. Labeling soy ingredients with the new Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark will recognize those soybeans that originated from a system of continuous environmental improvement.
Through March 19, the United Soybean Board (USB) is teaming up with partners from Soylent and DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences that will be participating in a pilot program to market their products and ingredients as being made with Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy.
“DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences is proud to partner with USB and Soylent in developing the Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark, which represents the many ways that U.S. growers are working to ensure that U.S. soy sets the global benchmark for sustainable plant protein production,” says Tony Andrew, Protein Solutions Business Unit Leader at DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences.
The new mark denotes agricultural practices, such as no-till and cover crops, that deliver sustainable outcomes in biodiversity, soil carbon, water management, and overall soil conservation. U.S. Soy delivers the food industry a quality ingredient to help them meet their sustainability goals by prioritizing soil health and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy usage.
Customers can be assured that products carrying the mark contain soy ingredients that:
- Were grown in the United States
- Are compliant with all U.S. environmental regulations
- Protect highly erodible soils and wetlands
- Were grown on family farms with responsible labor practices
Across the U.S., soybean farmers like Belinda Burrier are focused on being good stewards of natural resources and have been utilizing sustainable practices on their farms for years. “It feels good knowing that when I grow this nutrient-dense protein, I am not only helping the food industry feed millions of families across the country sustainably but also contributing to a cleaner planet for the next generation,” said Burrier.
Sustainable ingredients won’t just help food companies and industrial partners to meet their sustainability goals, but their business goals, too as consumer preference for sustainable, U.S. grown products continues to increase. According to USB’s 27th annual Food Industry Insights survey, when a product is associated with the Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark, the majority (nearly 70%) of consumers familiar with sustainable farming said they would be more likely to purchase the product — showing a strong correlation between the mark and consumer sales. The mark also assures customers that soy used in ingredients was grown in the U.S. on family farms with responsible labor practices and is compliant with all U.S. environmental regulations.
After the pilot program, USB anticipates making the mark available to other interested companies. Requests to use the Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark will be accepted through a USB managed portal. To participate, the customer will provide an overview of their supply chain which will be reviewed by a third-party auditor. The percentage of soy used by end product will be measured and applied against supply standards on a mass balance basis. The Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark is based on a national system of sustainability and conservation laws and regulations and farmer participation in the U.S. Farm Program. It seeks to increase demand for soybeans grown by U.S. farmers that commit to practices such as conservation tillage, cover crops and responsible nutrient management (e.g. right source, right rate, right time, and right place). The Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark applies to those soybean acres grown under best practices on-farm.
To learn more about the Sustainably Grown U.S. Soy mark, or interested in applying to use the mark on your own ingredients and products, visit their website.