The Sustainable Rice Platform (SRP) is a multi-stakeholder platform, co-convened by United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and the International Rice Research Institute to promote resource efficiency and sustainable trade flows, production and consumption operations, and supply chains in the global rice sector. The global rice sector is highly fragmented, characterized by high proportions of domestic consumption, large flows of South-South bulk trade, and a small number of relatively well-coordinated South-North and North-North supply chains. In addition, rice is a strategic staple crop of extreme public and political importance. Consequently, in order to have impact, the SRP aims towards a two-stream approach pursuing both public policy development and voluntary market transformation initiatives.
The Mission of the platform is to provide private, non-profit and public actors in the global rice sector with sustainable production standards and outreach mechanisms that contribute to an increase of global supply of affordable rice, improved livelihoods of rice producers and a reduction of the environmental impact of rice production. The SRP focus objectives are as follows:
- To develop a context dependent modular standard for sustainable rice production and processing (including decision making tools and quantitative sustainability impact indicators.
- To develop and promote outreach models that enable large-scale adoption of best practices through supply chain mechanisms and public policy development.
- To establish an international platform globally recognized for its role in promoting continuous improvement in sustainability in the rice sector with a broad participation from all actors throughout the value chain, the public sector and non-profit organizations.
The platform comprises members from Governments, governmental bodies, Research Institutes, NGOs, and private sector participants. As the standards and outreach models develop and implementation on the ground commences, farmer representation/ involvement is expected to increase. Organizations can adhere to the platform by committing themselves formally to contribute, either financially or in kind. The SRP meets annually to review its activities and plan forward, and operations are enabled by the following structure:
Advisory Committee provides oversight to the SRP. This body advises on the strategy and annual working plans and ensures that the Platform achieves its objectives and adheres to UN rules and regulations.
Working Groups focus on implementation process – development of sustainability standard and development of outreach models.
Secretariat, housed at UNEP, supports the Advisory Committee and the Working Groups and is responsible for the overall coordination of the operations and administration of the SRP.