KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia—The upcoming annual meeting of the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries is set to discuss sustainability and its costs for natural rubber smallholders.
To be held Oct. 7 in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, the event will investigate the limitations of the sector in adopting the sustainability norms mainly initiated by the tire industry, according to a July 16 statement.
The additional costs to adopt the prescribed practices and maintain standards, and "the abnormally high" fee for the certification, make it difficult for smallholders "to be on board" the sustainability drive, the association said.
Stating that around 90 percent of the world's NR supply is produced by smallholders, the ANRPC stressed the importance of including smallholders in the sustainable development of the value-chain. The inclusiveness can be possible only if the prescribed standards and certification system are adaptable to the smallholders.
The conference in October, themed "Adaptive and Inclusive Path to Sustainable Value Chain," will attempt to identify the standards and norms that are suitable for the smallholders and acceptable to other segments of the industry's value-chain.