World’s biggest meat firm JBS fueling Amazon deforestation, HSBC warns investors

HSBC bank warns on investing in meat firm JBS citing threat on Amazon deforestation - We The World Magazine
Image via HSBC.Co.In

One of the world’s leading lenders, HSBC Bank has warned stakeholders from investing in the mega beef firm JBS over the meat company’s longstanding inaction on the Amazon rainforest deforestation crisis.

In a financial report on the meat producing and supplying firm – the world’s largest – HSBC warns investors before buying stakes in the company, citing the investment could lead to further amazon deforestation.

In the report obtained by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, HSBC analysts say JBS “has no vision, action plan, timeline, technology or solution” when it comes to identifying or tracing the trajectory of its beef supply and if it originates from farms involved in rainforest destruction, the Guardian reports.

HSBC is the world’s 7th largest bank and Europe’s largest and has a significant investment in the Brazilian meat-processing firm. JBS is the world’s largest beef processing firm with an annual turnover of $50bn (£38bn) and can kill as much as 35k cows per day in its Brazil facilities.

Great concerns

Amazon’s rainforest, the world’s biggest and the most formidable of its kind, has been under the threat of climate change and illegal human activities that have already ravaged more than a thousand sq. km of the forest estate.

Known for its thick foliage and tremendous biodiversity, the biggest rainforest in the world is home to the largest indigenous communities alongside a striking flora and fauna.

Illegal mining by the timber industry and cattle ranching in protected areas are two of the biggest causes why the Amazon rainforest is degrading continually, AFP reports.

HSBC analysts in the report also highlighted disquiet on the fact, many smaller players in the same sector have fully committed to addressing and tracing the illegal cattle ranching chain before acquiring their meat supply.

Large scale livestock rearing is already a major cause of global warming, add illegal cattle ranching by clearing off the world’s most valuable green assets, the bane of the act is manifold increased.

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“We have never seen a major industry leader default an industry matter this serious to a smaller participant,” the report expressed.

Brazil’s government has been under increasing pressure from the international oversight by environmental and welfare groups over the country’s faltering response to the climate crisis and protection of the Amazon rainforest.

The Brazilian president Jaire Bolsonaro has time and again conveyed he is least concerned over deforestation and has indicated he would like to open the forest for mining and agriculture.

The last year study by Trase, a supply-chain initiative run by the Stockholm Environment Institute and NGO Global Canopy, found that JBS’ global beef exports – which includes major fast-food chains like McDonald’s and Burger King – were linked to up to 300 sq km of deforestation per year in Brazil, the Guardian reported.