Brazil is ready for EU regulation on deforestation-free products

Brazil is ready for EU regulation on deforestation-free products

During the International Coffee Seminar in Santos, experts say that the country is the most prepared for the standard in the coffee market

4 minutes read

In terms of coffee marketing, Brazil is prepared to meet the requirements of the European Union Regulation on Deforestation-Free Products (EUDR). In other words, it is due to be implemented at the end of this year. By the way, experts see the country in a more advanced condition even than nations from the Old Continent.

These statements were made on Thursday, May 23rd, the last day of the 24th International Coffee Seminar. Organized by the Commercial Association of Santos (ACS), the event was held at the Blue Med Convention Center in Santos.

European Union regulations

Europe’s legislation ended up being the main subject of the panel “Regulatory/Green Agenda: The new scenario for the flow of global coffee trade in times of ESG”. The CEO of the Brazilian Coffee Exporters Council (Cecafé), Marcos Antônio Matos, mediated the conversation.

During the explanations, there was a lot of talk about the fact that the rules laid down in the EUDR are still unclear due to a lack of information. The panelists even said that there are many uncertainties.

However, Cecafé Incl. international consultant Michael Von Luehrte was quick to reassure. “The legislation will affect all producing countries, there is no exception. But Brazil is better prepared than the Europeans. I can only congratulate the sector. Everything is going to be fine,” he said


The executive director of the British Coffee Association, Paul Rooke, then went on to say that Brazil is privileged. “You are one of the countries best placed to meet the requirements. Although you will have to make some adjustments. You have taken positions that put you in a leading position,” he said.

The Secretary General of the European Coffee Federation, Eileen Gordon Laity, stated that the country is “at the forefront, and that can bring advantages”. She also said that the nation “leads by example”.

While Brazil’s position is positive, the same cannot be said for many other producers. Feres pointed out that there are other locations that will face difficulties with the European law. “There will be disruption in the market”.

Van Luehrte went further, pointing to continents of concern. “The challenge is how countries in Africa, Asia and Central America will prepare for the legislation. Most of them have not been prepared to date.”

In principle, the EUDR imposes a ban on EU imports of products from deforested areas after December 2020. In addition to coffee, the regulation affects the sale of soy, cocoa and timber, among others.

Sustainability and efficiency

First and foremost, concern for the environment remained on the agenda. One of the topics on the panel was “Innovation to navigate a challenging climate future and AI (Artificial Intelligence) in agriculture”. The mediator was the CEO and co-founder of Salva, Mariana Caetano.

In her opening speech, she stressed that extreme climate change is causing problems. “Agriculture is vulnerable. But we have mechanisms emerging to help mitigate and adapt to the new times.”

Tizita Sileshi, director of food chain and sustainability at Yara International, then mentioned one of the resources already available. Above all, she mentioned that her company has developed a platform with sustainability data and indicators, in line with what is required in the coffee chain of responsibility. The system provides soil health indicators that help to create improvements. This allows us to drive change and decarbonize food production systems.

It’s not just a platform for Yara. There is a problem in the sector and we want to be part of the solution. We must work together, increasing efficiency and making the production chain more sustainable,” he said.


On the other hand, the innovation leader at John Deere, Leandro Carrion, mentioned other tools capable of enhancing and optimizing work in cultivation and production.

“We launched the autonomous sprayer. This revolution is great for the coffee market, because there is no operator exposure in the field. He controls the machine remotely. This optimizes manpower,” he said. He also pointed out that there are more tools that use cameras, sensors and artificial intelligence.

Despite these and other mechanisms being developed and put into action, the vice-president of BASF’s Agriculture Solutions Division in Brazil, Marcelo Batistela, said that the sector has an obstacle to overcome. “Integrating technologies. It’s a current challenge that needs to be worked on”.


Even so, the CEO of Syngenta Crop Protection, André Savino, who led the “Syngenta” panel, stressed that the result of the increase in technology will be positive for producers’ operations. “Digitalization is important because it ensures efficiency on a large scale”.

Of course, this requires investment. Francisco Jardim, co-founder and managing partner of SP Ventures (SPV), stressed the importance of the sector injecting resources into innovation. “To create new technologies, you have to combine new platforms with new business models.”

Even so, even if there is more money in operations and the development of new machinery, we can’t forget about human action. “We have to think about people, training, capacity building. A fundamental component is knowledge,” said Batistela.

The closing ceremony

After the explanations, the forum’s closing party took place. At Valongo Station, participants enjoyed a concert by singer Elba Ramalho.

In short, the musical attraction closed a historic forum. It was held for the first time in Santos and broke the record for number of participants, with 800 registered, divided into 34 countries. It’s also worth noting that the organization innovated by bringing in silent lectures.

In conclusion, the 24th International Coffee Seminar is sponsored by the Santos Port Authority (APS). As well as the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (ApexBrasil). And finally, MSC, Stonex, Serasa Experian, Nucoffee, Agridrones, CAIXA and Cooxupé.

Photo: José Luiz Borges