CSC App and IMS take Brazil’s sustainability activities to the next level

The Coffee Sustainability Curriculum (CSC) App and the Internal Management System (IMS) for sustainability have been growing over the past years to the point of becoming two pillars, on which the GCP Program in Brazil bases its current activities. What does 2019 bring for Brazil on this matter? What lessons did the Platform learn from previous years?

If you attended the Global Coffee Sustainability Conference last year in Belo Horizonte, you surely remember that moment where competitors in the coffee sector held hands together while announcing the launch of a GCP Member Initiative on the Responsible Use of Agrochemicals in Brazil. This was possible due to the power of collaboration, intensive work on alignment and the unique opportunity to address together a specific issue that affects farmers, their families and the value chain in different levels.

The activities related to the CSC App and the IMS in 2019 will lead to a concrete objective: developing a first case study for Sustainable Coffee Regions, one of GCP’s targets for this year. Sustainable Coffee Regions seek to structure the way we collectively act and implement the Coffee Sustainability Curriculum in coffee producing areas in form of a continuous improvement system. Such implementation is followed by measuring the successful activities and changes in coffee farms, which allows for better identification of any gaps to enable efficient sustainability investments and better performance in the field.

As additional target for 2019, the Brazil Coffee Sustainability Platform is working on becoming a legal entity in the country, which will allow its Members to rely even more on the Platforms’ leadership.

Learning from the experience on the field

Regarding the implementation of the Internal Management System (IMS) for sustainability in coffee cooperatives, rural extension services and traders/exporters, GCP Brazil summarizes its previous years as a marathon towards sustainability, where patience and commitment has been rewarded with incredible results and a positive outlook for the future.

In 2017, the Brazil Coffee Sustainability Platform took the first steps towards the creation of the tool. The idea reflected the need of members to organize and monitor their technical & sustainability departments as well as their activities with coffee farmers, resulting in a continuous improvement system. Despite the challenges during the IMS’ implementation, the lessons learned were a valuable input for the next steps:

  • Training on Internal Management System is not enough! GCP Brazil needs to guide and support the organizations during the actual implementation of the system.
  • Meetings, conference calls, regular assistance and a trustful relationship make a total difference in the process. Therefore, the Brazilian team offers remote assistance during IMS implementation for GCP Members during a period of 12 months.
  • It is important to have the entire coop/institution committed and involved in the implementation of IMS, especially directors and managers (high-level engagement is vital!). Thus, technical and sustainability departments can be empowered to advance and have the system actually incorporated through the entire organization.
  • IMS implementation is a long-term process, and it takes time to convince all levels of the organization of its importance and benefits to create a sense of belonging and get people on board!

As a GCP Member or Partner, you can be confident on the Brazil Coffee Sustainability Platform’s work. Its team constantly innovates on ways to improve and make your investments more efficient. Find out more about how Brazil is fully engaged towards achieving even better results in coffee sustainability for 2019 with your contribution!