“In a major development for our industry, our locally-developed and industry-supported Smartcane BMP program has been recognised by Bonsucro as having full alignment to its criteria,” CANEGROWERS CEO Dan Galligan said.
“Bonsucro is the preferred international certification for some of our key end-user sugar customers who have pledged to source sustainable sugar for their products by 2020.
“Every Queensland grower with a Smartcane BMP accreditation certificate should see this collaboration between CANEGROWERS and Bonsucro as a ticket to long-term access to the global sugar market.”
65% of the Queensland sugarcane production area is involved in the Smartcane BMP program. 160 farm businesses have achieved accreditation in its three core modules covering drainage and irrigation, soil health, nutrients and weed and pest management.
“Smartcane BMP demonstrates the sustainability of sugarcane production in local Queensland conditions, recognising and documenting grower efforts to minimise any impact their farms could have on the quality of water entering the Great Barrier Reef lagoon,” Mr Galligan said. “It has the endorsement of the Queensland and Australian governments.”
“Smartcane BMP is also, importantly, a practice improvement program with a clear focus on lifting the productivity and profitability of our farms to deliver solid business outcomes.”
As a global platform, Bonsucro has criteria designed to establish market access across a wide range of production systems.
"Aligning Smartcane BMP with Bonsucro is a big and important stamp of approval for our industry and for every single grower within the Smartcane BMP program,” Mr Galligan said. “It is another reason for Queensland growers to register, benchmark their farm practices and move to accreditation.”
Growers who have their Smartcane BMP accreditation will be able to access an additional module which will fill any gaps required to meet the full scope of the Bonsucro criteria. These gaps relate to issues such as labour management, greenhouse calculations and energy efficiency not covered in the Smartcane BMP modules.
The Smartcane BMP program is funded by the Queensland Government to support sustainable agriculture and achieve Great Barrier Reef water quality outcomes.