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IFC Sustainability

Environmental, Social, and Trade Standards

Environmental, Social, and Trade Standards


What we do


IFC’s Environmental, Social, and Trade (EST) Standards teams work with firms to improve performance and reduce cost through implementation of good practices and efficient verification and certification schemes in their supply chain. At a sector level, we increase access to markets for firms by setting, adopting, and deploying internationally-recognized standards that address environmental and social issues in different sectors. Examples of these issues include child labor, gender-appropriate labor practices, biodiversity protection and sustainable land management.



How we do it


IFC works with public and private stakeholders  to increase the adoption of standards by: 


  • Demonstrating to firms the benefits of standards through  the implementation  of good practices,
  • Training firms and their supply chains on adopting  standards, 
  • Promoting the adoption of standards among firms, governments, and NGOs,
  • Undertaking benchmark of standards to promote harmonization, reduce cost of duplication and increase knowledge,  
  • Collaborating with financial institutions, industry groups, and other market aggregators to scale up investment in standards adoption, 
  • Promoting and developing  standards for different industry sectors, such as the Roundtables for agri-commodities, 
  • Analyzing and supporting policy and regulatory needs on standards, such as Food Safety and national interpretation of international standards.



Environmental, Social, and Trade Standards Resources


Fact Sheet | Project Examples | Publications | Videos | Biodiversity and Agricultural Commodities Program


» Responsible Soy: Cost-Benefit Analysis Certification in Argentina and Brazil [PDF]

» Good Management Practices - Manual for the Cane Sugar Industry [PDF]

» Strategic Gap Analysis for Responsible Soy Production in Brazil and Argentina [Español | Português]





Larissa Luy | 33-1-4069-3168 (Paris, France) |
John Kellenberg | +1 (202) 458-2584 (Washington, DC, USA) |


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