What is Product Stewardship?

Product Stewardship refers to the industry’s Safety, Health and Environmental (SHE) management

It takes it beyond factory’s gates, in cooperation with suppliers, transporters and retailers. In many respects, it is about putting into place responsible business management processes across a product's lifecycle.

IFA's 12 SHE Principles

All IFA Members have adopted the 12 IFA Safety, Health and Environment Principles , which commits them, among others, to “establish and improve their safety, security, health and environmental performance through annual objectives, targets or key performance indicators”.

The IFA Protect & Sustain certification programme

IFA proposes a certification to its members, called “Protect and Sustain”, which presents a practical framework for implementing product stewardship practices – while providing the necessary reference material and the tools to aid implementation and to measure the progress achieved.

The certification process usually takes between three to five months. Six areas are examined: management system, product development and planning, sourcing and contractor management, manufacturing techniques, supply chain to customer, as well as marketing, sales and application.

Protect & Sustain was developed by IFA Members for IFA Members, with independent auditors DNV-GL and SGS, and has become the de facto global product stewardship standard for fertilizers.

By assessing your company’s product stewardship performance and joining IFA’s Protect & Sustain certification, you will identify your current status and prove your commitment to reaching a high level of safety, security and sustainability.

Benefits throughout the product lifespan:

  • 1. Safe working conditions
  • 2. Safe communities
  • 3. Protected environment
  • 4. Good reputation
  • 5. Less regulations/ taxes
  • 6. Less insurance payments
  • 7. More profitability
  • 8. Competitive advantage
  • 9. Less risk for investors

Protect & Sustain is now available for non-producers (fertilizer distributors, ports, traders and transporters), as well.

As of November 2018, 52 fertilizer companies (N, P, K) in 57 countries have been certified with Protect & Sustain! Protect & Sustain has also been made available for non-producer IFA Members.