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Firmenich has begun commercializing bourbon vanilla that has been sourced from Rainforest Alliance certified farms.
The Rainforest Alliance is an international non-profit organization that works to conserve biodiversity and promote the rights and well-being of workers, their families and communities. The company says Rainforest alliance certification ensures that the three components of sustainability—environmental protection, social equity and economic viability—have been comprehensively addressed in the production of these crops.
Firmenich worked with a local partner in Madagascar to help a local vanilla bean co-operative comprised of more than 1,300 farming families from 38 villages earn Rainforest Alliance certification. Since 2007, Firmenich says it has supported the co-op by helping to improve crop traceability, ensure sustainable land management practices, and provide access to healthcare services.
“The mission of the Rainforest Alliance is one that we firmly align with,” said Aldo Uva, president of Firmenich Flavors. “We are committed to the long-term sustainability of our vanilla producers and supply chain; economically, socially and environmentally, and believe that our customers value this commitment.”
Purchasing vanilla from Rainforest Alliance certified farms, the company said, continues a long-standing tradition it has with maintaining strong ties to its sourcing communities. As the most popular flavor in the world, Firmenich says vanilla remains a critical differentiator. According to Firmenich, it has the largest palette of vanilla from different origins and processes and uses this to create a full spectrum of profiles including tailor-made extracts and signature vanilla flavors.