Our Standard

2017 SAN Standard

The 2017 SAN Standard is the best-in-class in sustainable farm certification; it encompasses existing best practices and recent innovations in sustainable agriculture.

Built around the guiding principles of effective farm planning and management, protection of biodiversity and natural resources, and improved livelihoods, the 2017 SAN Standard is designed to enable more producers to embark and then continually progress on their journey toward sustainable farming.

The 2017 SAN Standard aims to support farmers in advancing sustainable livelihoods, improving farm productivity, and becoming more resilient to climate change. It represents a higher level than the previous standard, especially for the adoption of a much stronger continuous improvement framework.

Our standard addresses more effectively key topics in modern agriculture such as Climate Change mitigation and adaptation, farm management and productivity, prevention of deforestation, labor and humans rights, and includes a unique, innovative and science-based approach for pesticide use and Integrated Pest Management Plan.

Our Sustainability Principles

The 2017 SAN Standard are organized into four outcome areas, according to the sustainability principles in our Theory of Change for certification plus a fifth topic area for the cattle certification scope.

Effective Planning and Management System This principle advances the outcome area “Farm productivity and profitability” and also supports the delivery of all other outcome areas. It includes a section of requirements for Group Administrators’ management of group members.

The overall goal of this principle is to help farmers become more productive, by better managing the many social, environmental and agronomics aspects of their farms.

Biodiversity Conservation This principle aims to help prevent deforestation and to protect biodiversity, natural ecosystems, and High Conservation Value areas in and around certified farms.

Farms are required to contribute to conservation in the broader landscape by maintaining wildlife corridors and aquatic ecosystems, and by avoiding negative impacts to surrounding protected areas.

Natural Resource Conservation The careful conservation of natural resources is a foundational basis for sustainable farming. Minimizing environmental pollution benefits people, pollinators, animals and much more. This principle aims to ensure the health of soil and water, as well as reduce pesticide and fossil fuel use.

Proper use of pesticides and implementation of an effective IPM Plan that includes risk mitigation measures are included in this principle, as well as the prohibition of 170 substances according to WHO/FAO list.

Improved Livelihoods and Human Wellbeing By following the criteria in this principle, the SAN Standard intends protection of human and labor rights for farmworkers and their families.

Requirements in this principle include respect for Freedom of Association rights, payment of legal and eventually living wages, and prohibition of force labor, child labor and discrimination of any kind.

Sustainable Cattle Production Cattle production can pose a risk to the environment when not carefully managed, through greenhouse gas emissions, through damage to aquatic ecosystems and over grazed, degraded land.

Implementation of this principle’s criteria helps farms to raise cattle in a way that does not harm the environment, support increased productivity and ensures a stress-free life for the animal.

The specific policies associated to the certification system are available in our library as well as the certification documents in French and Portuguese.

Our Members

Transforming Agriculture
for the greater good of all

2017 Sustainable Agriculture Network

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