SBTN Launches First Science-Based Targets for Nature

The Science Based Targets Network (SBTN), a worldwide alliance consisting of over 80 environmental non-profit organizations and mission-driven entities, has recently unveiled the initial set of corporate science-based targets for nature. This first release from SBTN aims to empower companies to evaluate their environmental footprints and establish targets, focusing initially on freshwater and land. It intends to enable companies to mitigate their adverse effects on nature and society while simultaneously enhancing positive contributions. The initial nature targets concentrate on improving freshwater quality (specifically addressing nitrogen and phosphorus), managing freshwater availability, and conserving and rehabilitating terrestrial ecosystems.

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EFSA: Update Guidance for Assessing Risks for Bees and Pesticides

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) published on May 11, 2023, its reevaluation of the guidance document for evaluating the potential risks to honey bees, bumble bees, and solitary bees from plant protection products. In this updated version, the document incorporates the most recent scientific advancements and includes the latest methodologies for conducting risk assessments in this specific domain.

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EU: Council Adopts New Law to Fight Global Deforestation

The Council of the EU approved a new regulation on deforestation and forest degradation on May 16, 2023. This regulation imposes mandatory due diligence requirements on operators and traders involved in placing, making available, or exporting certain commodities from the EU market. The covered commodities include palm oil, cattle, wood, coffee, cocoa, rubber, and soy.

Additionally, the regulation extends to several derived products such as chocolate, furniture, printed paper, and specific palm oil-based derivatives used in various applications, including personal care products.

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USA: FDA Publishes Traceability Guide for Small Food Firms

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently published a guide specifically tailored to assist small food firms in meeting the traceability requirements outlined in the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The Small Entity Compliance Guide aims to support small businesses and farms by providing guidance on complying with the recordkeeping obligations specified in the legislation. These requirements are set to be enforced starting from January 20, 2026.

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USA: VIII International Symposium on Almonds and Pistachios

The ISHS, International Society for Horticultural Science’s VIII edition of the International Symposium on Almonds and Pistachios took place on May 7-11, 2023, in California at the UC Davis Convention Center. Experts from around the world gathered to discuss the challenges faced by almond and pistachio growers and processors. Researchers introduced potential solutions and shared insights on addressing issues related to water scarcity, the escalating salinity of water and soils, the rise in wintertime temperatures, and the emergence of new pests caused by changing environmental conditions.

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