The Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT) is a non-profit association created in 2007 to promote the "respectful sourcing" of ingredients from native biodiversity. Members commit to gradually ensuring that their sourcing practices promote biodiversity conservation, respect traditional knowledge and ensure an equitable distribution of benefits throughout the supply chain.
The idea behind the formation of the UEBT has three pillars:
- The need, expressed by small and medium-sized companies in developing countries, to find ways to differentiate BioTrade products in the market.
- The efforts initiated by the BioTrade Initiative of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), which was created to contribute to international efforts to promote sustainable development and biodiversity conservation.
- The recognition of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), in relation to the need to develop additional efforts to reach the private sector. Likewise, the CBD recognizes the strong relationship between business and biodiversity.
The fair and equitable distribution of the benefits obtained from biodiversity is one of the central objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The CBD recognizes the significant environmental, economic and social value of biodiversity. It also seeks to ensure respect for the rights of countries and communities over their biological resources and related knowledge; as well as that the benefits obtained from its use are distributed equitably. The CBD thus establishes commitments to maintain the ecological base of the planet within a context of sustainable development strategies.
The UEBT and Control Union Certifications
On February 13, 2009, Control Union Certifications and the Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT) signed a Memorandum of Understanding in order to provide the basic structure for cooperation between the two organizations. The areas of cooperation are: verification (UEBT can refer members or applicants for CUC to conduct third party audit within UEBT verification standards); synergies between UEBT and FSC standards (in case of joint certification/verification to reduce verification efforts); impact (UEBT and CUC will collaborate in measuring the impact of the implementation of the BioTrade Principles); and mutual learning and communication. This is how CUC has acted as an independent auditing body, executing the verification audits of the following member companies:
- PRODUCTOS ALIMENTARIOS MISKI S.A.C.
- VILLA ANDINA SAC
- LABORATORIOS HERSIL
- Agroindústrias OSHO
- The UEBT Standard applies to native natural ingredients, whether harvested or grown in the area where they are naturally distributed.
- It is applicable both for those who are directly involved in the supply chain of BioTrade goods and services; as well as for organizations or individuals that support the principles of Ethical BioTrade, but are not directly involved in marketing.
- The UEBT Membership System monitors the respect of the obligations of its members, such as compliance with the Minimum Indicators, and adherence to the work plans that aim to achieve compliance with the Principles and Criteria of Ethical Biotrade. .
- The UEBT applies the term Critical Path to the steps that members follow to achieve compliance with the Principles and Criteria for Ethical BioTrade.
- Once members comply with the UEBT Standard, membership will be conditional on continued compliance with the UEBT Standard. An audit by a third party will verify this compliance every 3 years, while the organization will report annually in the intervening years.
- Joint inspections: UEBT verification can be combined with audits for other standards such as: organic, Bird Friendly, among others, and there is a special synergy between the Union for Ethical BioTrade and Forest Stewardship Council Sustainable Forest Management standards. (FSC).