Partnership will improve livelihoods of rubber tree farmers in Indonesia. Tracking of the supply chain from the rubber cultivators to production will prevent deforestation. Continental is consistently increasing sustainability activities in purchasing.
Continental and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH are joining forces in a development partnership to improve the sustainability of the natural rubber supply chain in Indonesia. The country is the world’s second largest producer of natural rubber. The aims are to develop a criteria catalog for sustainable production of natural rubber, to train farmers in sustainable production in accordance with these criteria and to track this material from smallholders to production at Continental. Improved rubber quality, higher yields and supply chain optimization will generate higher incomes for rubber tree cultivators. The partnership between Continental and GIZ is part of the develoPPP.de program initiated by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). To ensure that supply chain partners are on board, memorandums of understanding have been signed with two suppliers.
Rubber trees grow in the same area where the rainforest grows. Therefore, it is important to ensure that this cultivation does not lead to deforestation. To safeguard and monitor sustainable production, Continental and GIZ will implement a traceability system and increase the traceable production of rubber in West Kalimantan over the next three years. In total, 400 farmers will be trained to grow high-quality rubber in accordance with clearly defined sustainability criteria. An electronic system will be developed to ensure full traceability of the raw material along the entire supply chain.
“Our objective is to establish a traceable and sustainable supply chain and set a best practice example for the production of natural rubber,” said Nikolai Setzer, who is in charge of Corporate Purchasing and the Tire division in the Executive Board of Continental AG. “The partnership with GIZ gives us access to local players whom we need to achieve traceability and sustainability.”