BELGIUM – Agribusiness giant, Cargill has unveiled a new initiative called Red Seaweed Promise designed to enhance global supply chain traceability and transparency while conserving the environment.

In addition to improving producers’ prosperity, the program establishes sustainability standards for sourcing red seaweed, raw material that produces carrageenan, a texturizer ingredient used in dairy, confectionery and personal care applications.

Through the program, Cargill has promised to address key sustainability challenges in harvesting and cultivation of red seaweed, while promoting the communities and protecting the environment they are grown.

The program also answers food industry and consumers’ needs for more sustainable food ingredients, with a commitment to source 60 percent sustainable red seaweed by 2025.

The initiative is part of Cargill’s strategy to partner with producers and suppliers to increase traceability and transparency in the supply chain for its customers.

The company has tapped the expertise of non-profit group, Proforest to define a credible industry standard evaluation tool and conduct verifications in the regions where the company sources red seaweed.

It involves four priority areas including empowering seaweed producers, improving production and harvest practices, supporting sourcing communities and strengthening partnerships.

“Red seaweed production is critical to the prosperity of approximately one million producers and their communities,’’ said Sebastien Jan, Cargill seaweed strategic sourcing project manager.

“Today, these producers face multiple challenges, from climate change and extreme weather events to inefficient farming and harvesting practices, which have a significant impact on the quality of red seaweed.

The Red Seaweed Promise supports producer’s prosperity by providing the training, coaching and tools producers need to adopt environmental and safe production best practices while committing to sustainable marine and coastal ecosystems.”

Cargill offers one of the widest ranges of commercially available carrageenan produced using red seaweed and some of its brands include Satiagel™, Satiagum™, Aubygel™.

“We are committed to making a positive impact and securing sustainably sourced red seaweed for our customers.

To ensure we are following international sustainability priorities, the program supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals” said James Ede, sustainability manager Cargill.

“The Red Seaweed Promise supports our customers’ sustainability commitments and provides assurance to consumers who are increasingly seeking sustainably sourced products.”

In 2017, Cargill developed a new dairy texturizer called Satiagel ADG 0220 Seabrid from 100% cultivated seaweed.