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COFCO International rotates sugarcane crop with soybeans to improve soil health and raise productivity

At COFCO International’s sugarcane plantations in São Paulo state, Brazil, sugarcane is being rotated with soybeans to improve soil health, increase yields and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the need for synthetic fertilisers.

“Soybeans fit well into our sugarcane rotation. They fix nitrogen in the soil and have enabled us to make production gains of up to 10% over the past five years,” says Luiz Gustavo Ares Kabbach, Agronomic Planning Manager, COFCO International Brazil.

Leveraging natural ways to fertilise crops is part of the company’s climate strategy. Improved productivity creates value for the business, with its farming teams harvesting 60 bags of soy per hectare, compared to the national average of 55 bags. Additionally, the company also cultivates 44,350 tonnes of soybeans annually through this initiative.

“We are pioneers in economically viable and sustainable agricultural systems,” concludes Luiz Kabbach. “I am happy to be close to nature and helping to produce food for the world.”

Nearly half of our employees are located within our sugar operations in Brazil.

Within our sugarcane plantations, we continued to expand our crop rotation project, planting soybean and other nitrogen-fixing crops, allowing for a more integrated farming system to improve potential sugarcane yield, while generating an additional source of revenue.

We source sugarcane largely from São Paulo state where we manage around 186,750 hectares of plantations and own four sugar mills.

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