Frequently Asked Questions

All of our key resources at your fingertips.

General

The Sustainable Rice Platform e.V. (SRP) is a global multi‐stakeholder alliance comprising over 100 institutional members from public, private, research, civil society and the financial sector. Originally co‐convened by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ), SRP is now an independent member association working together with its partners to transform the global rice sector by improving smallholder livelihoods, reducing the social, environmental and climate footprint of rice production, and by offering the global rice market an assured supply of sustainably produced rice.

The SRP was originally established in December 2011 and registered as the Sustainable Rice Platform Association (SRP e.V.) in Bonn, Germany in January 2020.

SRP’s primary purpose is to catalyze public-private action to accelerate rice sustainability through efforts to help farmers prosper, empower rice-growing communities, respect human rights, and conserve the environment.

The foundation for the SRP governance system is its members. The authority of members is exercised through the General Assembly, which functions as the SRP’s highest decision-making body and meets annually to perform statutory functions and provide policy guidance. Reporting to the General Assembly, the SRP Board advises on the strategy and action plans to ensure that the SRP achieves its objectives. The SRP Secretariat is responsible for the overall management and coordination of SRP’s programmes, partnerships, communications and resource mobilization initiatives to advance strategies and plans. The Technical and Monitoring & Evaluation Committees allow members to help shape our goals, tools and activities. Learn more about our governance system and team here.

Learn more about how you can take action and get involved to help transform the rice sector through the SRP here.

Membership

The SRP Membership Programme is open to any organisation from the public, private and civil society sectors, which supports the vision, mission and goals of the SRP. Organisations may participate in the SRP as a Member, Observer or Dialogue Partner by committing formally to contribute financially and/or in-kind, depending on the category. Membership in all categories except for Dialogue Partner rests with the institution; Dialogue Partners participate as individuals. Download the SRP Membership Programme Manual here.

The SRP currently comprises over 100 institutional members. Members are categorized into four broad constituencies: supply chain actors; service, input & equipment providers; public sector; and civil society organisations. A list of members can be found here.

Please review the SRP Membership Programme Mannual, which provides information on membership categories, commitments, value proposition, privileges, dues and policies. Then, please complete and submit the SRP Membership Application Form included in the Manual, along with the requested documents, to our SRP Communications and Membership Officer (roong.tepkaew@sustainablerice.org). Download the SRP Membership Programme Manual here.

Your organisation will have opportunities to access a network and collaborate with various actors in rice value chains; leverage insights that would otherwise be costly to conduct independently; access SRP tools and shared expertise; help shape SRP’s strategies, programmes, and policy advocacy; and increase visibility and recognition for organisational commitment to sustainability. Find more information here.

Tools

The SRP offers the global rice sector a set of tools to support large-scale adoption of sustainable best practices among rice smallholders. Tools include the SRP Standard (a set of requirements to define and score a farmer’s growing practices as sustainable), Performance Indicators (a set of metrics to measure impacts of applying the Standard), and Assurance Scheme (rules to verify compliance with the Standard to ensure credible public claims). See our tools here.

The SRP Standard and Performance Indicators currently provide the only recognized working definition for sustainable rice production and a means of monitoring impact linked with this definition. The Standard carefully weighs and balances on-farm practices across eight themes. The Performance Indicators consider environmental, economic, and social impact areas that are expected to be impacted as a result of applying the Standard in practice.

Currently, the SRP tools and training materials are offered only in English language.

Parties interested in translating the SRP tools and/or training materials into a language other than English should review the Interim guidelines for translation SRP tools and publications Version 1.0 for eligibility criteria and procedures for development of convenience translations and official translations. If your organisation meets the eligibility criteria and would like to discuss next steps, please send an email to our SRP Capacity Building Officer (sunantaya.pinyopimolporn@sustainablerice.org).

Please send an email to our SRP Standard and Assurance Officer (kongpichit.na.nakhonphanom@sustainablerice.org). Please be as specific as possible in your request, so that we can effectively assist you.

SRP Standard

The SRP Standard is the world’s first voluntary sustainability standard for rice. It is a set of good agricultural practices to work toward climate-smart sustainable rice farming at farm-level, and of criteria or requirements to score production as sustainably cultivated. The SRP Standard offers a normative framework that can serve as a basis for supporting claims to sustainability performance in rice supply chains. Download the SRP Standard here.

The SRP Standard can be applied by individual farmers, smallholder farmer groups, as well as larger farms, and focuses on ensuring relevance, practicality and impact, especially for smallholder farmers in developing countries. The SRP Standard applies to all farm-level processes in rice production, including postharvest processes under the farmer’s control.

The SRP Standard comprises 41 requirements structured under eight themes: farm management, pre-planting, water use, nutrient management, pest management, harvest and post-harvest, health and safety, and labor rights.

By adopting practices in the SRP Standard, smallholder farmers can produce at lower cost, increase net incomes, protect their health, and reduce the environmental footprint of rice cultivation.

SRP Performance Indicators

The SRP Performance Indicators allow for measurement and assessment of the sustainability impacts of adoption of recommended practices at farm level. The Performance Indicators enable collection of benchmark data and communication of field-level outcomes in a consistent way using a set of common indicators. Download the SRP Performance Indicators here.

The intended data collector is the implementing partner of a Registered SRP Project. An implementing partner may be a research institute, company, extension worker, project owner, group manager or miller. Data collection can be organized in different ways. If relying on farmer records, it is important to ensure that farmers have the capacity, willingness and information to measure and record accurately and regularly. Implementing partners should visit farmers regularly to discuss and corroborate their activities over the previous recording period.

The SRP Performance Indicators comprise 12 indicators: profitability (net income), labor productivity, productivity (yield), water productivity and quality, nutrient use efficiency (nitrogen and phosphorus), biodiversity, greenhouse gas emissions, food safety, worker health and safety, child labor and youth engagement, and women’s empowerment.

The SRP Performance Indicators offer a versatile tool to deepen our understanding of the effectiveness of individual interventions and the tradeoffs between them.

SRP Assurance Scheme

The SRP Assurance Scheme defines rules for actors engaged in measuring compliance or demonstrating improvements, providing demonstrable evidence of compliance with the SRP Standard and the use of SRP trademarks (Claims, Logos or Label) upon achieving assurance. The Scheme provides a robust and credible framework to enable supply chain actors to de-risk their supply chains.  Download the SRP Assurance Scheme here. More detailed FAQs on the SRP Assurance Scheme are available here [link to PDF of AS FAQ file].

In its role as Assurance Service Provider for the SRP, GLOBALG.A.P. manages implementation of the Scheme, including farmer registration, auditor training, verification audits, shadow audits and database management.

Data Collectors are responsible for collecting registration data and self-assessment reports from Producers and Producer Groups applying for Level 1. Data Collectors are required to contact an approved SRP Verification Body (VB) in order to upload the data to the SRP Database provided by GLOBALG.A.P.

Verification Bodies are responsible for inspecting and verifying compliance with the current version of the SRP Standard and for issuing statements that fulfilment of specified conformance requirements has been demonstrated.

SRP Internal Management System Standard

Internal Management System (IMS) refers to a documented set of procedures and processes to be implemented by a producer group to ensure and demonstrate that it can achieve specified requirements. The SRP IMS Standard sets out the requirements used by internal and external auditors to assess compliance of the producer group with the IMS, and against which the producer group can evaluate itself. Download the SRP IMS Standard here.

The SRP IMS Standard guides producer groups to ensure effective and transparent organisation and management of the group, as a foundation for strong internal assessment, which is the foundation of verification required under the SRP Assurance Scheme.

The SRP IMS Standard comprises 14 requirements: establishment, impartiality, producer list, producer agreements, gender equality, risk assessment, internal inspection, approval and sanction system, self-evaluation, group management plan, chain of custody, complaint management, service providers, and claims and use of SRP-Verified Label.

Verification Bodies are responsible for inspecting and verifying compliance with the current version of the SRP Standard and for issuing statements that fulfilment of specified conformance requirements has been demonstrated.

The SRP IMS Standard helps a farmer group to achieve effective and transparent organisation and management. The group must implement the SRP Standard and IMS Standard as a minimum, before they can be verified by a Verification Body under the SRP Assurance Scheme.

SRP Chain of Custody Policy and Standard

The SRP Chain of Custody (CoC) Policy and Standard describes the requirements and processes to ensure traceability of SRP-Verified rice by implementing a CoC system under one of three models: Identity Preservation (IP), Segregation System (Seg) or Mass Balance (MB). Supply chain organisations other than producers who at any point own or handle SRP rice must be audited and certified against the SRP CoC Standard in order to be allowed to use SRP Claims and the SRP-Verified Label. Download the SRP CoC Policy and Standard here.

The SRP CoC Standard applies to any Participating Operator (PO) purchasing, handling and/or trading SRP-Verified rice. PO refers to any company, association, factory, processing unit or other entity that applies for SRP CoC certification.

CoC inspections are conducted by Certification Bodies (CBs) approved for the SRP CoC Standard. Further information is available in the SRP Assurance Scheme Info Note No 2 (June 2021).

Logo, Claims and Label Use

SRP permits all its members to use the SRP organisational logo in off-pack communications. It is recommended that organisational logo use is accompanied by a corporate value statement, such as “[Company Name] is an active member of the Sustainable Rice Platform – a global alliance working to promote eco-friendly rice farming, empower small farmers and reduce the environmental footprint of rice. Learn more at www.sustainablerice.org”. Usage guidance is provided in the SRP Brand Manual 2020 here.

A claim of sustainable rice cultivation can only be made if a minimum score of 90% is achieved in an audit against the SRP Standard for Sustainable Rice Cultivation, together with a minimum score of 75% against the SRP Internal Management System (IMS) Standard for Producer Groups. Further, in achieving these scores, the essential compliance levels (mandatory thresholds) for each requirement in the SRP Standard and IMS Standard must also be met.

In such cases, SRP permits claims in on-pack and/or off-pack communications. Permitted claim statements differ according to the assurance level selected (Levels 1-3) in the SRP Assurance Scheme.

  • Those completing Level 1 assessment are not permitted to make any claims.
  • Those completing Level 2 assessment may make claims on-pack and/or off-pack.
  • Those completing Level 3 assessment may make claims on-pack and/or off-pack, which differ according to the Chain of Custody model used.

Conditions and prohibitions are provided in the SRP Assurance Scheme (see Annex 7) here.

SRP permits use of the SRP-Verified label only in on-pack communications (e.g., retail rice packs and bulk rice sacks or boxes) for products that comply with Level 3 assessment in the SRP Assurance Scheme under product segregation or identity preservation. It is recommended that SRP-Verified Label use is accompanied by an appropriate claim statement. Conditions and prohibitions are provided in the SRP Assurance Scheme (see Annex 7) here.

Yes, the SRP Secretariat and Technical Committee are responsible for pre-approving label designs and can offer support to ensure compliance.

The SRP-Verified Label represents the integrity of claims on sustainable best practices according to the SRP Standard for Sustainable Rice Cultivation, as verified through the SRP Assurance Scheme at the most robust level of verification. By choosing to buy SRP-Verified rice, you can contribute to the following impacts:

  • saving water
  • reducing greenhouse gas emissions
  • increasing farmer income
  • improving the livelihoods of smallholder farmers
  • enhancing social equity

Training

SRP Training Courses are designed to build a cadre of persons qualified to conduct farmer outreach, training, and verification activities in support of SRP objectives. SRP endorses selected institutions (Authorized Training Providers) to deliver its approved training courses and to administer course exams that lead to successful trainees’ receipt of a certification from the SRP (SRP Authorized Trainer). These individual help to further scale capacity building on-the-ground.

SRP members and Registered SRP Projects commit to use only Authorized Training Providers and/or SRP Authorized Trainers for SRP-related training activities to ensure high quality implementation, consistency, and credibility of SRP related claims.

Approved SRP training courses aim to build a cadre of persons qualified to conduct farmer outreach, training, and verification activities in support of SRP objectives. View courses and training calendar here.

There are currently two (2) training courses developed and recognized by the SRP:

  • Understanding the SRP Standard and Performance Indicators
  • Understanding the SRP Assurance Scheme

Two (2) additional training courses are in development with expected launch in 2021:

  • Understanding the SRP Internal Management System Standard
  • Understanding the SRP Chain of Custody Standard

Only Authorized Training Providers are institutions that are endorsed by the SRP to deliver the approved training courses on SRP and to administer course exams that lead to successful trainees’ receipt of a certificate of recognition from the SRP. There are currently three (3) Authorized Training Providers endorsed by the SRP:

Institutions interested in becoming an Authorized Training Provider should review the Criteria and procedure for authorizing training service providers Version 3.0 for eligibility criteria and procedures for SRP endorsement. If your organisation meets the eligibility criteria and would like to discuss next steps, please send an email to our SRP Capacity Building Officer (sunantaya.pinyopimolporn@sustainablerice.org).

Individuals who meet certain requirements receive from SRP a Certificate of Recognition as an “SRP Authorized Trainer” (with unique registration number). SRP Authorized Trainers are empowered to help to scale capacity building on the SRP Standard and Performance Indicators:

  • Be engaged/hired by SRP Authorized Training Providers, Registered SRP Projects, SRP Members, or other stakeholders to support capacity building on the SRP Standard and PIs
  • Conduct training needs assessments to identify farmer training, information, and support needs related to SRP and adoption of sustainable best practice
  • Tailor content of the Understanding the SRP Standard and Performance Indicators course, only to: (1) translate core training modules into local languages; (2) replace and/or add examples, photos, and cases used in training modules to align with local context and conditions; and/or (3) adjust content of training modules to match relevant National Interpretations Guidelines for the SRP Standard
  • Deliver Understanding the SRP Standard and Performance Indicators course to target audiences on-the-ground (e.g., local trainers and implementers, farmers)

Attend and complete the Understanding the SRP Standard and Performance Indicators course and pass the course exam by earning 80% or higher. Receive from SRP a Certificate of Recognition as an “SRP Authorized Trainer” (with unique registration number). View the training calendar here.

Maintain your recognition as an “SRP Authorized Trainer” by attending informational sessions in case of minor updates to SRP instruments (online); complete re-training in case of new version of SRP instruments (online or in person), or re-testing every five (5) years if no new version of instruments released (online).

Yes, SRP members and Registered SRP Projects commit to use only SRP Authorized Training Providers (institutions) and/or SRP Authorized Trainers (individuals) for SRP-related training activities to ensure high quality implementation, consistency, and credibility of SRP related claims.

In the SRP Standard, Requirement No. 3 focuses on training. If a farmer or farmer group has received training from an SRP Authorized Training Provider, SRP Authorized Trainer, or person directly trained/supervised by an SRP Authorized Trainer, the farmer or farmer group is eligible to meet the highest level of compliance (score) in this requirement.

Contacts

Please send an email to grievances@sustainablerice.org. If lodging a complaint or grievance, please include:


(a) contact information of the individual or organisation filing the complaint/grievance;
(b) information about the individual or organisation against whom the complaint/grievance is submitted;
(c) summary of issues and events that led to the complaint/grievance
(d) overview of steps taken to resolve the issue prior to lodging this complaint/grievance and any response received; and
(e) evidence/documents to support the complaint/grievance.

All information will be handled confidentially by the SRP Secretariat. Further actions will be agreed and coordinated together with you.