The COSA Measuring Sustainability Report

Jay Owen Sustainability News, Beyond GDP


With warm regards,

Daniele Giovannucci
Daniele Giovannucci
President, COSA

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 The COSA Measuring Sustainability Report

Executive Summary

There are many paths to achieving sustainability. To choose the best one it is necessary to measure results in a reliable and yet cost-effective manner.

COSA, working together with many global partners, offers science-based insights and managerial tools to make the future of agriculture a more sustainable one.

Chapter 2
Sustainability and its Recent Evolution

The influential and explosive new trends in sustainability are laid out in sustainability of farmers, communities, and the environment in transparent and standardized ways.

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Chapter 3
About COSA

The rationale for COSA explains the history, basic structure and unique approach to measuring sustainability. It includes an outline of the COSA System.

The COSA System
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Chapter 4
COSA Methodology

COSA uses a coordinated and systematic approach to collect and analyze data recognizing that Performance Monitoring and the Impact pathways are vital stages for understanding sustainability and managing for results.

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  •  COSA method begins with fostering a consistent set of indicators and  COSA tools ensure appropriate framing of any assessment to ensure that the three dimensions are captured in order to provide an overall picture of sustainability and the inevitable Scientific process matters at every step such as the representative accuracy and reduced COSA always integrates national partner

    Chapter 5
    COSA Findings

    Arranged by Economic, Social, Environmental and Producer Group findings, this section of the report presents a sampling of the many ways that COSA information can be useful. It includes useful lessons and surprising findings gathered from Africa, Asia and Latin America.

    ·        Sustainability Standards tend to be context specific: good in some areas and weak in others

    ·        Higher yields can correlate with better environmental practices

    ·        Multiple certifications correlate to more, not less, income, but only up to a point

    ·        The overall tendency of certified           Certified Producers Outcomes compared to Uncertified Producers
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    Chapter 6
    Lessons Learned and Next Steps

    A summary of likely next steps for COSA and some distilled key lessons for:

    ·        Policymakers and Companies
    Sustainability Standards play a unique role in a fast-changing agricultural landscape affected by diminishing resources,
    climate change, and population pressures. However, only a small part of the ?nancial value that they generate actually reaches producers.

    ·        Producers and NGOs
    It can be difficult to ascertain which approaches warrant the cost and effort of compliance. The promises that circulate of insatiable markets and high premiums are not certain and local institutional support is invaluable when undertaking sustainability approaches that entail change.

    ·        Standards Bodies
    Many Voluntary Sustainability Standards are investing in balanced sustainability indicators, as ISEAL and others are recommending, can advance transparency will be useful for the process of improvement.

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    Committee on Sustainability Assessment COSA
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    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19147-4707

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