Title Bar - Sustainability



Viterra's Sustainability Program 



What is sustainability certification all about?

Our Sustainability Program is about helping producers gain market access for their products.  For example, the EU has certain requirements in place for its canola imports and by certifying that our customers meet these requirements, we are creating more demand and movement opportunities for canola out of Canada.


What is involved in being certified?

The certification process is quick and easy.  We ask that producers fill out a short questionnaire to confirm their sustainable crops practices.  Since we established this program, we have found that a large majority of our customers are already utilizing sustainable practices on their farms.  This process is about ensuring we have the paperwork in place in order to satisfy the conditions for steady access to this market. 

I’m confident that I use proper practices on my farm.  Why should I bother becoming certified sustainable?

Worldwide demand for sustainably produced products is growing. Some governments are mandating minimum levels of sustainability produced products. Viterra’s ability to supply sustainably certified Canadian grain allows access to these developing markets. 

End use customers sourcing sustainable ingredients from Viterra need to able to transfer this certification down to their finished products and provide a sustainably labeled and verified product to their consumers. 

Further, certification is good for all crops grown on the farm, not just canola. We are starting to receive more inquiries from customers looking for sustainable wheat, pulses and other oilseeds.

Is there a cost for producers to be part of the program? 

No.  This program is all about ensuring that producers are certified to meet the EU’s sustainability requirements for canola shipments and able to access this market.  


What if I farm land that someone else has cleared since 2008? 

Land conversion over one hectare after January 1, 2008 which is not replaced excludes the grower from the sustainability program. This includes land converted by previous owners.


So for example if I cleared 80 acres that would exclude my other 3500 acres? 

Yes.  Unless cleared acres are replaced, any unapproved land conversion will result in all acres being ineligible for the program. 


What if I am certified sustainable, then purchase new land where clearing has occurred since 2008? 

Any additional non-compliant acres would make the existing farm also non-compliant.


What are the penalties for non-compliance after signup? 

There are no penalties for non-compliance.


What if my pesticide storage is deemed to be inadequate? 

There are no special requirements for pesticide shortage.  Producers simply need to follow product recommendations for safe storage.


How does the elevator separate my canola? 

There is no physical separation of canola at the facility.  


I have some large sloughs that can be farmed in dry cycles then flood out in wet cycles. What happens to them? 

Sloughs that can be farmed when dry are not considered established wetlands. The land conversion clause is intended to ensure that natural grasslands, designated parklands and wetlands saturated with water for significant portions annually are protected.  Slough areas that vary from year to year would typically not be considered an issue.  We encourage farmers to contact our customer account representatives for more information on whether their land meets the ISCC’s program requirements.


What is the premium attached to this program? 

Please contact your local Viterra Representative for pricing details.


How many farmers has Viterra signed up for its sustainability program? 

Since we launched the program in 2013, thousands of farms across Western Canada have become certified under Viterra’s sustainability program.  


How can I find out more?

Please contact your local Viterra Representative today to learn more about this program and how you can get your farm ready to take advantage this demand into the EU.