Friend of the Earth is an international certification scheme for agri-food products obtained with sustainable agricultural processes. In the recent decades, intensive agriculture and breeding have helped the increase of the adverse impacts on the environment: from the increase in carbon dioxide to deforestation, through the loss of natural biodiversity.
Friend of the Earth’s principles
The Friend of the Earth certification scheme for sustainable agriculture was developed according to the SAFA (Sustainability Assessment of Food and Agriculture systems) guidelines set by the FAO (United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization). Its principles based on the protection and preservation of ecosystems where the certified companies carry out their activities.
The term “sustainability” is intended as an integrated factor among environmental, social and economic elements.
Sustainable development is “a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to satisfy their own needs”, moreover “far from being a definitive condition of harmony, it is rather a process of change such that the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional changes are made consistent with future needs as well as with the current ones” (WCDE, 1987).
A model of sustainable agriculture
Friend of the Earth promotes a model of agricultural production based on the integration of innovation aimed at reducing the environmental impact of crop farming and on the respect of workers employed all along the productive chain. Introduction of the use of energy from renewable sources, integrated control and no tillage are good examples of corrective actions that the certification encourages through its requirements. In other words, Friend of the Earth certified companies care about: soil conservation, safeguarding of agricultural and natural biodiversity, water retention, ecosystem stability, pollination functions and lastly, but no less importantly, the dignity of the workers.
CCPB and the inspection activity
The World Sustainability Organization Srl (company that manages this standard in Italy) has selected CCPB as the main partner entrusted with the inspection activity at the production sites of the farms and breeding farms that will apply for the certification according to this standard. CCPB is not only a certification body, but also an Inspection body, accredited by Accredia according to ISO 17020.
Companies interested in this certification may visit the website www.friendoftheearth.org and download the standard and other reference documents.
As far as concerns a quotation for the inspection activity, the inspection application duly filled out must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.