Agribusiness companies increasingly recognize that the sector needs to make sustainable use of land, water, and other key natural resources, while increasing supply to meet market demand. The sector also faces social challenges, including the need to raise labor standards. IFC seeks commercially viable solutions and helps companies set benchmarks for responsible production in line with industry best practices. In areas such as sequestering carbon, managing watersheds, preserving biodiversity, and producing renewable energy resources, IFC’s efforts can also help generate new income through environmental services. IFC is also working with clients to strengthen their supply chains by helping small farmers increase productivity and apply appropriate environmental, social, and quality standards.
We also support global initiatives for sustainable production of agricultural commodities. In partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, IFC promotes better management practices through participating in sustainability roundtables in a number of industries such as palm oil, soybean and sugar cane.
With donor support from the Global Environmental Facility, in 2007 IFC started the Biodiversity and Agricultural Commodities Program to promote best environmental and social practices, particularly in the production and overall supply chain of such commodities as palm oil, soybeans, sugarcane, and cocoa.