100 Million Farmers: Transitioning towards net-zero, nature positive food systems

100 Million Farmers is a multistakeholder platform catalyzing action to transition towards net-zero, nature-positive food systems by 2030. It supports local solutions that empower both farmers and consumers to place climate, nature and resilience at the core of the global food economy

Transforming food systems: an imperative and an opportunity

Climate change and nature degradation threaten the ability of our food systems to nourish the world, reversing the tremendous progress that has been achieved on yield improvement and farmer livelihoods over the past decades. Yet agricultural systems are uniquely positioned to fight and adapt to climate change, while also restoring and protecting the natural capital upon which their productivity and resilience depends. 

Applying regenerative and climate-smart agricultural practices that leverage natural ecosystems can create multiple co-benefits such as increased economic and environmental resilience, improved livelihoods, soil health, enhanced biodiversity and improved water quality. The cumulation of these benefits, described as a “carbon+” approach, would ensure the health of both people and the planet.

Towards net-zero, nature-positive food systems

Ambitious and integrated action across sectors is needed to rebuild the food economy with climate, nature and resilience at its core, and to trigger market-based incentives that signal to farmers and consumers alike that there is value beyond productivity.

Embedded in action and starting with the farmer, 100 Million Farmers has three bold objectives:

1. Demonstrate the ability of food systems to shift away from significant emissions and nature degradation towards climate mitigation, adaptation and nature restoration.

2. Catalyze a global, scalable transition that incentivizes 100 million farmers to adopt regenerative and climate-smart practices, while empowering 1 billion consumers to demand and support this type of agricultural production.

3. Facilitate collective action to deliver net-zero commitments and maximize co-benefits that achieve ‘carbon+’ outcomes for healthy people and a healthy planet.

Translating global ambition into place-based action

Bringing together the ambition of various World Economic Forum leadership groups, such as the Champions for Nature, the Food Systems Stewards and the Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders, 100 Million Farmers drives an action-focused agenda anchored in regional and national ‘lighthouse’ projects. Each lighthouse is led by a regional multistakeholder coalition, with solutions tailored to local food systems and the biodiversity they depend on.

Lighthouse in Action: Example from the EU

As part of the 100 Million Farmers, numerous organizations and stakeholders representing every step of the food value chain have come together under an ambitious new effort to decarbonize the European food system, while maximizing other benefits such as soil health and farmer resilience. The initiative to form a coalition was catalyzed in collaboration with by the World Economic Forum’s CEO Action Group for the European Green Deal. Agriculture in Europe is today responsible for 10 percent of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the transformation of the sector could be a sizeable contributor to Europe’s net-zero emission plan.

To address this challenge, these organizations have come together behind ‘Carbon+ Farming Journey’ project. This effort will take a farmer-centric approach to increase the uptake of regenerative and climate-smart agriculture practices, identifying the roadblocks to adoption, designing solutions with economic, practical and ecological benefits to farmers. It also will work to develop financial tools to empower farmers in managing transition risk and recommend the right set of farmer incentives.

Currently, the following organizations are partners in the emerging European Carbon+ Farming Coalition: BASF, Bayer, COPA-COGECA, CropIn, European Conservation Agriculture Federation (ECAF), European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) Food, HERO, Planet Labs, Rabobank, Swiss Re, University of Glasgow, Yara, Zurich and the World Economic Forum.

Join us

A wide range of perspectives, expertise and stakeholders is needed to help transform our food systems for a net-zero, nature-positive world. To find out more on 100 Million Farmers or join our work, please email us at 100MFarmers@weforum.org

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