Cargill and World Resources Institute (WRI) have collaborated since 2015, combining their expertise to accelerate the development and improvement of global tools to drive a more sustainable agricultural system. The work has included supporting enhancements to WRI’s Global Forest Watch, the development of a leading Water Management Toolkit, and collaborating to develop industry-leading protocols on food loss and waste and greenhouse gas emissions for land use change.
In 2020, Cargill committed to providing $1.8 million to support WRI’s work as the global secretariat to Initiative 20x20, which will enable WRI to have the necessary resources to support the expansion of individual projects and innovative business models for restoration across the Amazon and Cerrado biomes of Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. These resources help WRI to accelerate the scale up of these individual projects into a new investment class. The goal is to maximize their financial, climate and social potential.
Some of the activities being undertaken by WRI as a result of Cargill’s support include:su
1. Information gap and barrier analysis to facilitate the aggregation of farmers (and their land) and to inform providers of capital interested in the scale of individual proposals.
2. Capacity and institutional strengthening of local farmers, cooperatives and producer associations to enable them to contribute to the scale-up strategies and eventually to business management and further replication.
3. Environmental and social impact assessments of the scale-up interventions to identify any potential negative impacts and take corrective or preventive actions.
4. Communication and consultation strategies to inform all potential stakeholders and others of the proposed scale-up activities and address any questions raised.
5. Engagement of other financial parties interested in the business and benefits of the scale-up proposals.
Through this initiative, the overall aim of Cargill and WRI’s collaboration is to enable at least four restoration projects in South America to develop business expansion models that will bring 500,000 hectares of land into restoration.
Large-scale restoration efforts can positively affect agricultural and forestry practices and behaviors, reducing or even reversing negative impacts on biodiversity, water, and soil quality and improving welfare indicators in rural populations. Cargill has been working with farmers, industry partners, communities, governments and NGOs to improve the sustainability of agricultural production across the South American region for many years. Supporting Initiative20x20 is an important extension of this work, bringing new innovation and scale to addressing the key environmental and social challenges in Cargill’s critical supply chains. More information about Cargill’s approach to sustainability in South America, particularly in soy value chains, can be found here.