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International retailers

Full statements from retailing companies


“More than 90 % of Lidl’s beef is of European origin. We want to emphasize that we take this topic very seriously and are in close exchange with our suppliers such as JBS about social and environmental aspects such as deforestation. Also we want to make aware, that “Manor House” is no longer in the Lidl assortment.

In general Lidl defined its social and environmental expectations in a robust Code of Conduct for business partners and commits to social standards set out by the International Labour Organisation and the United Nations. In it, Lidl rejects any form of exploitative labour or the abuse of human rights and labour laws across our supply chain. In general, our internationally implemented online reporting system enables to raise serious concerns confidentially. In case we have any information about violations of our requirements, we will investigate immediately.

Lidl is following developments regarding the Mercosur Treaty with full attention. Regardless of future developments, we remain committed to our goal of deforestation-free supply chains. At Lidl, we understand the importance of healthy forests and natural ecosystems, for people, the planet, and business. In this context we commit to achieve zero deforestation and no conversion by 2025. Our commitment to zero deforestation and no conversion is aligned with the guidelines provided by the Accountability Framework Initiatives. We understand that tackling deforestation and the conversion of valuable ecosystems requires a holistic approach to our supply chains and beyond.

Also Kaufland condemns all forms of abuse of employee rights in the strongest possible terms. The chicken nuggets do not originate in Brazil, nor do any of the other poultry products. Pure poultry products are made using only meat that is from animals raised in Germany. In keeping with the guidelines for animal welfare in Germany, beef from Brazil is sourced exclusively from producers which are signatories of the Greenpeace Cattle Agreement or which hold a similar sustainability or environmental certificate, such as from the Rainforest Alliance. The same applies to the other Kaufland national companies. Moreover, as part of the Schwarz Group, Kaufland is bound to comply with the Code of Conduct for Business Partners, which imposes requirements on partners to uphold minimum social standards and to comply with the applicable social and environmental laws.”

Rewe Group

“Since land-intensive soy cultivation has drastic consequences for the environment, especially in South America, REWE Group continuously analyzes all supply chains with a high use of soy with a view to the ecological balance. By the end of 2021, REWE Group aims to make its soy feed supply chains deforestation-free.

REWE Group has been committed to protecting and preserving the rainforest and upholding human rights in the Amazon for years. To this end, we have signed the following open letters and thus clearly positioned ourselves: www.retailsoygroup.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Letter-from-Business-on-Amazon.pdf


Together with numerous Brazilian NGOs and global retail companies, we already signed the “Cerrado Manifesto – Statement of Support” in 2017 to draw attention to the ecological risks of climate change and deforestation due to agricultural production in the Cerrado savannahs in Brazil’s southeastern interior.

In 2013, REWE Group published its soy strategy in the Guideline for Soy as Feed. Elementary pillars of the strategy are the reduction of the share of South American soy meal and the increase of the share of European protein feed. Information on REWE Group’s measures and goals in the area of soy as animal feed as well as the guideline can be found at: https://www.rewe-group.com/content/uploads/2013/06/guideline-soy.pdf

REWE Group does not carry private label fresh meat from Brazil in its product ranges. For the supply chains of REWE Group private labels of animal origin, we are fundamentally committed to successively reducing imports of soy meal from South America as well as certifying non-substitutable South American soy and promoting the cultivation of European soy and the use of alternative domestic protein sources. REWE Group relies on standards such as Pro Terra, ISCC+, Donau Soja/Europe Soy and RTRS when it comes to deforestation. The contractual agreements with suppliers are accompanied by audits.

By using sustainable soy as feed, REWE’s and PENNY’s entire private label range of fresh eggs, drinking milk and fresh poultry meat has already been certified deforestation-free since the end of 2019. The REWE Group sustainability label PRO PLANET on the respective products indicates a certified deforestation-free supply chain. By the end of 2021, the supply chains of REWE Group private labels for fresh pork and beef are also to be 100 percent certified deforestation-free.

As a founding member of the Donau Soja association, REWE Group has been able to promote the cultivation of over certified deforestation-free soy in the Zupanja region in Croatia in cooperation with over 200 farmers since 2015. The association is committed to regional value creation in the European Danube region and an independent, ecologically sustainable protein supply.

REWE Group is also a member of the “Forum nachhaltige Eiweißfuttermittel”. Already in 2017, the members of the Forum adopted a joint position paper and announced their individual objectives based on it. Among other things, we jointly advocate increasing the share of native legumes in feed and using only sustainably certified soy. In 2020, the members of the Forum expanded the position paper to include a thesis on deforestation-free supply chains: https://www.ble.de/SharedDocs/Downloads/DE/Projektfoerderung/Eiweisspflanzenstrategie/200917_Positionspapier-FONEI.pdf?__blob=publicationFile&v=3

Albert Heijn

“Through Ahold Delhaize, Albert Heijn is committed to preventing deforestation and human rights violations in our private label supply chains. By way of ‘New York Declaratie op Ontbossing’ and Consumer Goods Forum Resolutie om Ontbossing te Voorkomen (https://www.theconsumergoodsforum.com/environmental-sustainability/forest-positive/). Based on these commitments, Albert Heijn has been working for years to prevent deforestation and human rights violations (https://www.aholddelhaize.com/en/news/ahold-delhaize-publishes-inaugural-human-rights-report/) in the most critical chains.

Albert Heijn takes responsibility for private label products. However, the product you are referring to, corned beef, is not a private label product, but A-brand. Ofcourse, we expect A-brands to take responsibility as well: https://static.ahold.com/media//002342100/000/002342158_001_Albert_Heijn_Due_Diligence_5.2020.pdf


“A Sainsbury’s spokesperson said, “Sainsbury’s is committed to sourcing sustainably and working together with the wider industry to tackle deforestation and preserve the essential ecosystems in the Amazon and Cerrado.”

For further information:

— Sainsbury’s sources corned beef indirectly through JBS in Brazil

— Despite the UK representing a small fraction of total export volumes out of Brazil, we believe that together with the wider industry we can influence significant strides to address these issues. This work is already underway and we are involved in a number of projects which we hope to be in a position to update on soon

— If we identify suppliers which are either unwilling to recognise issues with their production or work together to remedy them, we will review our commercial relationship with them and sever ties if necessary

— We are supportive of industry agreements to end legal and illegal conversion of natural ecosystems like the Amazon and Cerrado – in fact, we were one of the first companies to sign a Statement of Support for the Cerrado Manifesto – a call from various businesses that use soy and meat from these regions to support habitat protection”


Thank you for reaching out to METRO, asking about the policies we have in place to make sure that our meat suppliers do not contribute to illegal deforestation and human rights violations in South America.

METRO is an international wholesaler, specializing in the needs of professional gastronomy and trade customers. It is one of our company’s principles to offer an assortment that meets high standards of quality and safety as well as sustainability, and that meets the demands of our customers. That is why we offer for example a wide range of fresh and ultra fresh products, among them a variety of beef products. Most of the beef products are sourced regional, mainly in Europe. To meet all customer requirements, especially those of the international cuisine, we also offer beef products from South America. In any case, the volume of regionally sourced beef products exceeds the international offer many times over.

Trading with natural resources, we understand that it is our obligation to address environmental and social issues along our supply chains. To this end we are working alongside our partners in the supply chain and with certification schemes. Regarding your question we have the following policies in place that tackle meat procurement and supply-chain related deforestation:

Meat procurement policy

Soy procurement policy

Furthermore, we are working towards deforestation free supply chains as one of the 20 members of the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) Forest Positive Coalition. We are active in all of the coalition’s working groups, including the Beef Working Group. In this group, we collaborate with retailers, manufacturers and NGOs to tackle deforestation and human rights violations in global beef supply chains. To this end, we are setting up a road map and are in discussions with big meat packers and traders to work towards supply chains that are free of deforestation and human rights violations. Additionally, METRO is a signatory and active member of the Cerrado Manifesto Statement of Support Group and has signed and supported open letters that appeal to the Brazilian government to better protect the rainforests and their indigenous populations in Brasil.  

Finally, with our overarching METRO Human Rights Policy we underline that we respect internationally recognized human rights within our own operations and throughout our value chain. We especially take into account the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Bill of Human Rights, the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the International Labor Organization’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. Our policy applies to our own employees as well as to all business partners within our global supply chains.

You can find more information here:




Stop & Shop is a leader in sustainable retailing and responsible sourcing, and we consistently work with all of our suppliers to ensure high standards accordingly. We proactively engage our suppliers to drive change on key issues of importance to our customers and communities, and that’s a role we take seriously. We will continue to urge suppliers, including Grace and Iberia, to preserve and protect natural resources.”


“Carrefour is committed to fight deforestation in its supply chain. The group has set up a zero deforestation target within the resolution of he  Consumer Goods Forum. In order to to achieve this goal the group is working across different commodities including beef and at different levels, both collectively and individually.”

In Brasil

“Carrefour is selling Brazilian meat throughout its stores in Brazil. Carrefour Brazil has set up a dedicated action plan to reduce risks of deforestation in its purchase. Suppliers must follow the criteria set by the company’s Sustainable Beef Policy and ensure reliability, tracking, inspection, and reporting of the cattle sourcing process. To verify the implementation of this policy by slaughterhouses and their suppliers, Carrefour Brazil uses a geomonitoring tool that verifies that its purchase are not coming from farm in deforested regions, environmental conservation units, indigenous lands, embargoed areas, and areas with the presence of slave labor. Depending on the result of its geomonitoring, Carrefour Brazil can decide on commercial restriction. Regular meetings are taking place to  engage suppliers in efforts to have Zero Deforestation and an internal governance has been set in place to follow the implementation of this policy.

In addition to mitigating risks in its own operations, Carrefour Brazil is leading the way to share protocols to fight deforestation together with slaughterhouses and the retail sector. 

In other geographies

Carrefour has adopted “CSR food transition purchasing rules” in order to implement common standards in its purchasing practices throughout its operation and to lead food transition regarding key material issues (sustainable packaging, biodiversity, social compliance etc.). They defined the group’s procedures to reduce risks of deforestation within sensitive commodities. As part of these rules, beef used in Carrefour brand products should not come from risky areas or should apply similar verification to the ones set in place by in Brazil. 

At group level to engage with national brands and traders 

Carrefour is committed to establishing a deforestation-free supply chain, taking action within its own activities as well as through contributing to collective initiatives, to drive transformative change.

Since 2019, Carrefour has served as Co-Sponsor of the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) Forest Positive Coalition of Action – bringing together 20 of the top consumer goods companies – to combine its collective reach and knowledge, global networks and resources, to engage and collaborate with producers, suppliers and traders, as well as governments and NGOs, to advocate for fofort positive solutions.

Though this platform, Carrefour is able to set common practices with key suppliers and competitors. As part of the work of the coalition, traders practices are assessed.  Carrefour engages directly with all the key traders in its supply chain to ensure progresses in their policies and action plan. The group will adapt its purchasing policies depending on this regular assessment. 

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