Deforestation-free commodity trade: Scaling-up implementation with jurisdictions

Production of forest-risk commodities drives most loss and degradation of tropical forest. These commodities move along complex supply chains, exposing thousands of private and public institutions worldwide to the risk of involvement in unsustainable land use and deforestation. This brief outlines steps to facilitate wider implementation of deforestation-free commitments for consideration in ongoing discussions on public and private strategies to promote responsible commodity production and trade.

Key messages

  • A global coalition of public and private actors is committed to stopping deforestation associated with major commodities like palm oil, soy, and pulp and paper, but implementation is lagging.
  • Innovative analysis of trade, customs and production data is starting to uncover information about the global flows of commodities that present risks to forests, removing a key information barrier faced by public and private actors in implementing these commitments.
  • Measuring the success of deforestation-free supply chains is context-dependent. Ultimately, success is linked to the implementation of sustainable land-use planning in jurisdictions where commodities originate.
  • Knowing the local, subnational location of origin of commodities is essential to assessing forest-related risks and opportunities in trade.
  • Producing countries seeking preferential access to emerging deforestation-free markets can take a proactive role in clarifying the criteria for deforestation-free commodity production within their jurisdictions.
  • Supply chain transparency can contribute to fighting tax avoidance and may strengthen collaboration between producer and consumer countries on forest-risk supply chains.