Boeing is expanding its initiative with South African Airways (SAA) and the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) to provide more opportunities for smallholder farmers in Southern Africa to grow crops that produce sustainable fuels. According to Boeing, the program builds on a global effort by Boeing, RSB and other partners to help farmers with small plots of land gain access to markets for sustainable biofuels and biomaterials.
“In the coming months, Boeing and RSB will work with Southern African stakeholders to create pilot programs to build knowledge and skills among groups of farmers who want to certify their crops as sustainable,” Boeing said in a statement. “Over the long term, as Southern Africa gains capacity in this area, more farmers will be positioned to tap into demand for biofuel feedstocks certified to provide socio-economic value to communities without adverse impact to food supplies, fresh water or land use,” it said.
SAA Group Environmental Affairs Specialist Ian Cruickshank said the airline “seeks to drive development of sustainable biofuel supply chains in a way that enhances our region’s economic opportunity from local agriculture and energy production. Our joint project with Boeing and RSB is a first step toward the goal of ensuring that our efforts benefit smallholder farmers, given their importance to our country’s rural economy.”