De Heus Animal Nutrition partners with Black Jaguar Foundation to help realise the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor

17 August 2021
3 minutes

On August 17 De Heus Animal Nutrition signed a long-term partnership with the Black Jaguar Foundation to support their efforts in strengthening the longest of all nature corridors on earth and one of South America’s largest reforestation projects. The Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor in Central Brazil will have a total length of 2,600 kilometres and a width of up to 40 kilometres situated alongside the riverbanks of the entire Araguaia River and part of the Tocantins River. The Corridor connects two of the world’s most vital ecosystems: the Amazon rainforest and the Cerrado savanna.

To support the Black Jaguar Foundation with their mission to plant 10 million trees by 2025 to help protect and increase biodiversity in the corridor between the Amazon rainforest and the Cerrado savanna De Heus will provide a yearly contribution to this project. This contribution aligns with the Global Green goals – four global ambitions that show the commitment of De Heus towards tackling some of the sustainability issues associated with the feed industry and the production of animal proteins.

One of the issues linked to the production of livestock is the land use change associated with the production of raw materials used in animal feed. Therefore, De Heus committed itself to the use of certified soy (in compliance with the Fefac Soy Sourcing Guidelines) in all its business units by 2025. Additionally, De Heus decided to support the Black Jaguar Foundation on their mission to prevent the loss off valuable natural ecosystems and protect biodiversity.

The biggest part of this year’s contribution will be used to build a large-scale tree nursery in Santana do Araguaia, where approximately 500.000 new trees will be grown each year before they can be replanted on one of the reforestation sites. Additionally, part of the contribution will be used to set up the foundations seed collection initiative – where people from local and indigenous communities will be trained to help collect seeds from native trees – and the training and outfitting of the fire brigade in Santana do Araguaia to help fight and prevent forest fires. Starting next year, the contribution of De Heus will be used to cover part of the operational upkeep of the nursery and  the planting of hundreds of thousands of native trees in the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor in the coming years.

Koen de Heus, CEO of De Heus Animal Nutrition: ‘Providing access to safe, healthy and especially affordable food is one of the biggest challenges the world faces today. At the same time, we need to reduce the impact our food production systems have on vulnerable ecosystems. To achieve both goals, we need to produce food more efficiently to prevent excessive land use change in the near future. We can only achieve that when we treat farmers as our allies when tackling these challenges. That’s what we like about the Black Jaguar Foundation. They work together with farmers on the realisation of the Araguaia Biodiversity Corridor’

‘Through our partnership we can show to Brazil and to the world that food production, restoration and the protection of biodiversity can grow stronger together. We believe that we all have the power to change and make a difference for future generations to come. That’s’ why we are proud that De Heus has decided to become a partner of the Black Jaguar Foundation.’ Ads Ben Valks, founder of the Black Jaguar Foundation.