Forum announces Call to Action in response to worsening climate and eco-system forecast

Date: March 28, 2023

The Forum for the Future of Agriculture today used its Annual Conference in Brussels to issue a Call To Action to all stakeholders in the food and agriculture system in the face of a worsening forecast for the climate and the health of the world’s ecosystem.

According to WWF, nearly 70% of wildlife species have been lost since 1970, which represents a clear threat to the eco-system upon which food and agriculture depend. At the same time, the latest warnings from the IPPC – backed up by last week’s major new synthesis report on climate change – make clear that we have a final chance to limit global warming. If this opportunity is not taken, the planet will be on an irreversible course that will make some places uninhabitable and others increasingly inhospitable.

The Forum believes that the food and agriculture system possesses the human know-how and ingenuity, innovation and technology, and natural capital, to not only increase its productivity, but importantly its resilience and sustainability, as well as reducing its own carbon footprint and removing billions of tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere.

Although progress is being made toward achieving these goals, the Forum, along with our partners who are part of the agri-food system, recognize the need to go further and faster. To do this, we will work individually and collectively with our partners and all stakeholders to help:

1. Develop and scale regenerative agriculture, in conjunction with similar approaches, underpinned by common metrics driving enhanced outcomes for productive and environmentally sustainable farming.

2. Value and account for the use of natural capital, such as water, soil, air, and biodiversity, by the agri-food system.

3. Contribute to the development and alignment of public and market-based incentives for nature restoration and delivery of other eco-system services.

4. Share knowledge and pursue innovation in technology and practices that support both food and environmental security and move away from those which don’t.

5. Integrate sustainability into supply chains and the global agri-food trade system, leaving no one behind.

6. Inform the development of more coherent agri-food policies at local, national, regional and global level and continue to build public and private partnerships for greater impact.

7. Enhance consumer awareness of their role in building a more resilient and sustainable food and agriculture system.

Commenting on today’s announcement of the Call to Action, Janez Potočnik, the Chair of the Forum for the Future of Agriculture said: “The commitments we have set out today in our Call to Action lay down a challenge to us all to take these and other necessary steps to ensure the food and agriculture system transforms itself to become more resilient, sustainable and climate and nature positive, as well as remaining productive to meet the needs of a growing population.

We will use these commitments to monitor and to report on our collective progress and to drive change by using our convening power in each of the areas to find the most impactful solutions, both in Europe and globally.

It should now be clear to everyone that maintaining the status quo whilst trying to fix the chronic planetary crisis is not consistent and just creates confusion and unhelpful lobbying. Most importantly, it is simply not possible to do both. We must act now if we are to have any chance of fixing tomorrow”.

About the Forum for the Future of Agriculture
The Forum for the Future of Agriculture is the premiere meeting place to debate sustainable agriculture and environmental challenges. Since 2008, the Forum is where agriculture and environment meet for an open dialogue, both online and in-person.

Media enquiries
Emmanuelle Mikosz, Programme Director
Tel: +32 2 790 88 65

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