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September 06, 2019 | City Pages
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Environmentalists Partially Blame Cargill for Amazon Fires

Cargill says it takes immediate action against suppliers conducting illegal activity

Volunteers with the grassroots environmental nonprofit Mighty Earth gathered at the Minneapolis Institute of Art to draw attention to what they see as a key contributor to the blaze, according to a CITY PAGES report. Not the museum itself, but one of its chief donors — Cargill. 

Experts say the fires are burning in a pattern we’ve come to expect when people clear forest for ranches and farms. The Amazon is not just “burning,” it is being burned — largely because Brazil is the world’s biggest exporter of beef and soy. Cargill, based in Minnesota, is the largest privately owned company in the United States, and one of the world’s largest food and ag companies. It’s also the biggest trader of Brazilian soy.

Cargill sent a statement saying the company is "committed to protecting the Amazon," pointing to the Soy Moratorium as an example. 

"If cases of illegal activity are confirmed with any of our suppliers, we take immediate action in line with our forest and sustainable soy policeis and supplier code of conduct," it said. It added that the company is "strengthening its grievance process" to "articulate more clearly" what the company's doing to enforce it. 

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