What would sustainable soy look like in Paraguay?

GLF Live with Pablo Nicolini, Enrique Molas and Raquel Fratta

This post is also available in: Español

Please note that this conversation will be hosted in Spanish only.

Paraguay is one of the world’s leading producers of soybean and beef, together making up 65 percent of the country’s exports and 25 percent of its gross domestic product. Unfortunately, these commodities have been growing at the expense of the country’s forests and biodiversity. The Atlantic Forest of Alto Paraná, a biodiversity hotspot, is increasingly being deforested to make room for soybean production.

The Food Systems, Land Use and Restoration (FOLUR) Impact Program is working to implement sustainable value chains in Paraguay, combat deforestation and promote sustainable agriculture and integrated landscapes.

In this Spanish-language GLF Live on 21 July at 12:00 UTC, three experts will discuss the FOLUR project in Paraguay, how roundtables can foster collaboration along the green value chain, and the importance of gender-sensitive capacity building.

Nelson Enrique Molas G., National Coordinator, FOLUR Impact Program, ICCF Paraguay 

Nelson Enrique Molas G. is an agronomist by profession with a master’s degree in seed sciences and technologies and a specialization in quality management and sustainable production. He currently works as the national coordinator of the Food Systems, Land Use and Restoration (FOLUR) Impact Program, which is executed by the International Foundation of Cacus Conservationist (ICCF). He is a member of the international council of the Round Table on Responsible Soy Association (RTRS) representing certified producers from Paraguay. He was a consultant for the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP/ICCF), coordinating the consulting team designated to develop the design of the FOLUR project (GEF-7), which is led by MADES, implemented by UNEP and executed by ICCF. He is a representative of the Traceability and Transparency Platform for Commodities – TRASE en Py, which is a traceability and transparency platform for commodities at a global level, developed by the Stockholm Environment Institute and Global Canopy, mapping the physical flow of soy and meat commodities in Paraguay. As a consultant for UNICOOP, Nelson helped develop a manual on good agricultural practices (GAPs) for the production of grains and the implementation of GAPs in soybean production areas. 

Pablo Nicolini, Global Business Development Officer, RTRS (Round Table on Responsible Soy)

Pablo is the global business development officer at the Round Table on Responsible Soy (RTRS). Pablo holds a degree in Biology from the University of Buenos Aires and a Master in Business Administration from the University of Palermo, also located in Buenos Aires. Pablo began his professional journey at Zeneca, where he focused on the environmental and public health sectors. Afterward, he spent over 10 years at Syngenta, specializing in crop protection. During this time, he led grain barter operations and various demand and sustainability projects aimed at enhancing farmer productivity, technological advancement, and sustainability practices. He implemented sustainable soybean production programs, promoting responsible farming practices, and encouraging farmers to obtain voluntary certifications in sustainability and quality standards.

Subsequently, Pablo relocated to Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where he served as the general manager for Interoc Custer Corporation. Over the course of four years, he collaborated closely with small, medium, and large-scale farmers, emphasizing responsible production and fostering strong relationships throughout the soybean value chain. He has been part of the Secretariat of RTRS for the past two years, contributing to the organization’s efforts in promoting responsible soy practices globally.

Raquel Fratta, Project Administrator, FOLUR Paraguay

Raquel Fratta currently serves as the project administrator for FOLUR in Paraguay. Raquel has extensive experience working with civil society organizations both locally and internationally, serving vulnerable populations, especially young women, farmers and Indigenous communities in rural areas. Before joining FOLUR, she worked for 10 years at the Moises Bertoni Foundation, an NGO in Paraguay focusing on nature conservation, sustainable development, and education. She designed and implemented projects focusing on women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship, and territory development integrating social, environmental and economic value.

Raquel is an active member of the scientific committee for the World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC), headquartered in Italy. She is the co-author of Sustainable Adventures in Mbaracayu, a bilingual children’s book for all ages set in the Atlantic Forest of Alto Paraná.



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