The Sustainable Nut Initiative (SNI) was founded in 2015 by a number of frontrunning private sector companies. They share the deep-rooted goal to improve the circumstances in nut producing countries, to work towards sustainable supply chains and to find sustainable solutions for the future of the sector.
SNI is a pre-competitive collaboration platform that brings together all nut supply chain actors, who show commitment to work on a more sustainable nut sector. We aim to create a beyond certification and risk-based approach allowing current and future sustainability issues to be tackled on a sector level. Participants work on continuous improvement.
The initiative is a foundation under Dutch law and the participants elect the board which currently consists of representatives of Intersnack, Olam and Nuts2 and an independent chairperson. ComCashew and IDH, The Sustainable Trade Initiative, involved since the start of SNI, function as advisors to the board. FairMatch Support functions as a secretariat.
SNI creates solutions to tackle current and future sustainability issues on a sector level. The initial focus has been on cashew but other categories will be discussed in the future. To scale up impact in the cashew sector, SNI has had a strong linkage and collaboration with the Competitive Cashew Initiative (ComCashew) since its start in 2015.
ComCashew is part of the GIZ (De Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH) program on the “Broad-scale Promotion of Agricultural Value Chains” in Africa. GIZ provides services in the field of international development collaboration. Jointly with private and public actors, ComCashew constitutes a new era of multi-stakeholder partnerships aiming to achieve a sustainable poverty reduction in the project countries Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Mozambique and Sierra Leone by enhancing the competitiveness of African cashew smallholders, processors and other actors in the value chain.
The collaboration with ComCashew has resulted in many projects with participants geared to an improved sustainability, e.g. a broader uptake of the traceability software amongst companies in the nut chain. Since 2018 ComCashew has been an advisor to the board of SNI and SNI has a board seat in ComCashew. The risk assessment, carried out by an independent organisation, is coordinated by ComCashew.
“Both SNI and ComCashew have a manifest desire to strategically develop sustainable supply chains and a healthy cashew sector. Together we will contribute to reducing the yield gap in production, the competitiveness gap in processing and the sometimes complex regulatory reality in the cashew producing countries. The past years, ComCashew and SNI have learned a lot, now it is time to share the lessons learned, bundle resources and scale up impact, in order to contribute to the development of a healthy cashew sector in Africa ”.
IDH, The Sustainable Trade Initiative works on the sustainability of international trade chains. IDH builds result-oriented coalitions of companies, NGOs, governments and other partners. They bring together public and private partners, knowledge, ambitions and interests to make international trade chains more sustainable.
From the start, IDH has been involved in the Sustainable Nut Initiative. They supported several projects with the leading cashew processors in West Africa. Some of these projects resulted in the start-up process of the Sustainable Nut Initiative. During the start-up phase, we focused on putting the tools in place to create transparency and traceability. IDH was one of the funders of the 3S Management Information System that was developed. Today, IDH is still actively collaborating with the Sustainable Nut Initiative taking part in the board and as a funder for projects.
FairMatch Support runs the secretariat of the Sustainable Nut Initiative. They function as a knowledge base and support participants. FairMatch Support is one of the initiators of the initiative. FairMatch Support develops and improves sustainable agricultural supply chains in various sectors, from fruit and vegetables to cocoa and from nuts to beeswax, making sure there is a market and a viable business case for (smallholder) producers as well as traders, purchasers and funders.
Based on the vision that alternatives are possible FairMatch Support worked together with Nuts2, Olam and Intersnack, among others, on a project on how to work on sustainable supply. This let to the establishment of the Sustainable Nut Initiative.
SNI participants and partners are international frontrunners joining forces to address and mitigate sustainability issues in supply chains of nuts. Making sure there is a profitable business case for everyone involved in the supply chain. Need more information? We will gladly answer all your questions!