Goodyear’s New Procurement Policy Demands Sustainable Practices from Soybean Suppliers

(Credit: Goodyear)

by | Mar 18, 2021

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(Credit: Goodyear)

Goodyear has put a new soybean oil procurement policy into place that the company says will help guide processors, farmers and all other members of its supply chain to establish more sustainable practices in terms of growing, harvesting and processing soybeans.

The company says it will work to promote a supply chain free from deforestation and land-grabbing, with the rights of all workers protected. Goodyear expects its soybean oil suppliers to grow and harvest the product using best-practices in terms of cultivation and agriculture, and to manufacture their products in a “responsible and environmentally friendly manner.”

As Goodyear moves to fully replace petroleum oil in its products by 2040, the company is increasing its use of soybean oil; usage of the replacement oil increased 73% in 2020 over 2019, Goodyear says. The company’s scientists and engineers, along with the United Soybean Board, have developed a tread compound in which soybean oil, used to replaced some or all petroleum-derived oil, was found to help keep a tire’s rubber compound pliable in changing temperatures, a key performance achievement to maintaining and enhancing vehicle grip on roadways.

Goodyear’s soybean oil procurement policy is effective immediately and applies to all soybean-based materials sourced by Goodyear operations worldwide.

Bridgestone Corporation is another tire and rubber company that has devoted significant resources to ensuring sustainable supply chains for the materials in its products. The company announced in January that it has developed a system that utilizes big data to contribute to higher yield at rubber farms. The mathematical model incorporates a variety of factors, including soil health and disease management, to derive information on which clones of trees should be planted where, when and in what quantity in order to maintain high natural rubber productivity.

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