The Dutch Soy Coalition
Founded in 2004
Taking into consideration the magnitude and the pressing nature of the problems caused by the production, transport, processing and consumption of Soy, ten Dutch organisations formed the Dutch Soy Coalition (DSC). The DSC urges all relevant players to contribute towards the reduction of soy caused problems. The worldwide problem requires worldwide solutions. Therefore the DSC works with a large number of organisations in soy producing countries: South America, Europe, the United States, India and China. The members of the DSC address the soy issue through awareness raising of consumer and the different actors in the soy value chain. The DSC lobbies towards governments, pressures and has dialogues with companies and supports affected communities and small soy producers.
Over the last number of years, soy has become one of the most important worldwide commercial crops. Large areas of South American tropical forests and grass-lands are cut down for soy plantations. The expansion of soy cultivation all too often goes hand in hand with conflicts over land rights, the violation of worker and environmental rights and the loss of local food security and job opportunities.
The Netherlands is the second largest importer of soy in the world and is an important player in the world market.Ninety percent of all imported soy is processed as animal fodder. Farmers raising cattle, pigs and chicken for meat production profit the most from the cheap soy imports. As a result the Netherlands is faced with a serious excess of manure production. In South America the problem is the othet way around: soil gets replenished by using vast amounts of polluting artificial fertilizers.
Moreover, soy imports are so cheap that there is no incentive to develop any sort of regional or national production of animal fodder. It is simply not possible to compete with the cheap soy from South America.
ROLE OF BOTH ENDS
Both ENDS is hosting the secretariat of the Dutch Soy Coalition assuring communication, coordination, information exchange and joint strategy development. The aim for DSC partners is to be complementary in activities, respecting the differences between and specific focus of each member organisation.
- In February 2008 the Dutch parliament accepted a number of motions promoted by the members of the Dutch Soy Coalition.
- The Dutch Government has included several policy documents working towards reducing the negative impact of soy.
- A number of Dutch companies are sourcing responsible Basel soy (soy that meets the Basel criteria).