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Brazil: Despite being included in the forced labour dirty list, Cutrale has farms certified for “good practices”

Author: Daniela Penha, Repórter Brasil (Brazil), Published on: 23 May 2018

"Included in the dirty list, Cutrale still has farms certified with "good practice" seal-The Rainforest Alliance seal, one of the most important certifications, was awarded to farms belonging to Cutrale, a company caught using slave labor in 2013. The certifier that challenged the process was replaced", 17 May 2018
Even with the company's name included in the "dirty list" of slave labor, a group of farms belonging to Succítrico Cutrale received one of the most important socio-environmental certifications in the world: Rainforest Alliance's "good practices" seal. The certification – one of the core requirements for exporting orange juice to the European market – was granted by Rainforest Alliance after the process was challenged by another certifier group – Brazilian organization Imaflora. The seal is especially important for Cutrale, one of the world's largest orange juice traders. According to the company, 98% of its production is exported to countries in North America, Europe and Asia. The Rainforest Alliance seal is respected worldwide...While consumers would pay more for it, they would be sure to buy a product that values ​​environmental protection, social equality, and economic viability...Luís Fernando Guedes Pinto, Imaflora's agricultural certification manager, explains that Cutrale's inclusion in the "dirty list" was the reason why his organization challenged the recommendation. The list is released by Brazil's Ministry of Labor and includes companies that were caught using slave labor. After Imaflora's refusal, Rainforest Alliance did something unusual in certification processes and unprecedented in the company's policy in Brazil: it authorized replacing the certifier during the certification process: Imaflora was replaced with IBD, which then granted the certificate. Rainforest Alliance's senior manager global media Donita Dooley said the organization's evaluation standards include "a critical criterion prohibiting all forms of forced, compulsory, or slave labor". The seal's standards...include no obstacles that are specific to the dirty list of slave labor...[S]ince March..., Cutrale is the only company included in the list of slave labor that markets products under the Rainforest Alliance seal...Cutrale argued that the farms certified are not in the slave list...it has received the certification "of the Rainforest Alliance Seal for having demonstrated to the companies accredited and qualified to carry out audits that it complies with all the requirements contained in the current standard"...[T]he certified properties are not the same as those where slave labor was found...Companies in the "dirty list" of slave labor can reach settlements with the government to get out of it...[And sign]...the...Conduct Adjustment Agreements...Cutrale did not make that agreement. Instead, the company tries to overturn the decision in court...

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Related companies: Cutrale