SAI's ‘Regenerating Together’ offers globally aligned definition of regenerative agriculture

Leading global fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies commit to new global framework for regenerative ag practices
calendar icon 29 September 2023
clock icon 4 minute read

SAI Platform announced the launch of the ‘Regenerating Together‘ global framework for regenerative agriculture, which signifies an important moment for SAI Platform, its’ members and the agri-food industry at large. For the first time, the sector has a globally aligned approach for the transition to regenerative agriculture practices.

With climate change set to decrease the productivity of farming globally by up to 30%, we are at a critical moment for the agriculture industry. The Regenerating Together framework and broader programme unite the food and beverage industry to bring about large-scale, long-term systemic change to future-proof global food supply.

Yves Leclerc, Global Director of Agriculture Sustainability, McCain and Steering Committee chair of the Regenerating Together programme, added: “We urgently need to transition towards a more regenerative food system – for our people and our planet. As chair of the Regenerating Together Steering Committee, I am delighted that the framework launched today will enable farmers to take action and implement regenerative practices, and crucially support the measurement and verification of progress.”

Commenting on what this framework signifies on-the-ground Leclerc concluded: “Having piloted the resources with our growers, I see the potential this can have to provide clarity and consistency on what regenerative agriculture means and the outcomes we are looking to achieve. The potential impact is huge and the development of this global framework through cross-industry collaboration is a key step towards scaling the transition to more sustainable farming practices.”

The framework sees over 30 agriculture cooperatives, industry giants and the broader 170-strong SAI Platform membership, including Nestlé, Danone, Unilever and PepsiCo commit to a global standard for regenerative agriculture. In collaboration with farmers, academia, NGOs and these businesses, SAI Platform has established an aligned approach to agriculture that aims to mitigate and adapt to the impact of climate change, improve soil health, support biodiversity, retain water in the soil and reduce its consumption while keeping farmers’ business viability central in a just transition approach. 

SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together programme aims to unite the agriculture industry with a common goal – a resilient and productive food system that will regenerate natural ecosystems and improve the quality of farmers’ livelihoods.

Speaking about the launch of the framework, Eric Soubeiran, Vice-President Business Operations Sustainability, Unilever, said: “SAI Platform’s ‘Regenerating Together’ programme has grown from the industry recognising that we must evolve our approach to sustainable agriculture, to an agreement that we need to drive measurable outcomes to create a resilient food supply chain. As individual organisations, we have set targets to implement regenerative agricultural practices, but this new framework brings leaders together to work towards one common commitment. We believe this framework sets a new standard for regenerative agriculture globally, whilst providing the flexibility that’s needed at farm level.”

SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together framework is designed for practical use at farm-level to drive farmers’ transition to regenerative agriculture. It will allow crops, dairy and beef farmers anywhere in the world to work with supply chain partners to achieve measurable regenerative agriculture outcomes and enables the industry to translate the often-ambiguous concepts of regenerative agriculture into action at farm level. In addition, the framework will be integrated into SAI Platform’s existing industry solutions including the European Roundtable for Beef Sustainability (ERBS), the Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA) and the Sustainable Dairy Partnership (SDP).

Developed in consultation with farmers, academics and NGOs, the framework will assess, monitor and verify farm practices to aid the global transition towards regenerative agriculture. SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together programme identifies four key areas of impact:

  1. water
  2. soil
  3. biodiversity
  4. climate 

The framework has devised four clear steps through which to enact the framework: 

  1. risk screening assessment
  2. outcome selection
  3. the adoption of principles
  4. practices and the monitoring and assessment of progress

Jo Lawrence, Senior Manager, Agriculture Sustainability Global Concepts, Arla Foods, and founding member of Regenerating Together commented: “Our farmer owners are experts for their farm in many aspects regarding soil, water and biodiversity and many are already practising regenerative farming practices within their individual context. What they need from us and the wider industry to accelerate their efforts is an agreed-upon science-based framework for regenerative farming as a concept and a way to measure the direct impact and that is exactly what the Regenerating Together programme offers. As one of its founding members, we at Arla Foods are excited to drive forward the future of regenerative agriculture.”

Today’s announcement of the Regenerating Together global framework for regenerative agriculture is the result of an extraordinary collaboration across crop, beef and dairy sectors. Furthermore, this is a farm-level framework designed with flexibility and pragmatism to drive the transition to regenerative agriculture and transform to a more sustainable food system.

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