Actor-oriented risk classification of origins of agricultural products based on global spatially differentiated impacts on biodiversity

We aimed to learn from and understand the needs of stakeholders at the beginning of the scientific processes. Together we asked whether a monitoring approach--based on regional assessment of biodiversity risk--could provide a useful tool for responsible food sourcing.

WP 1

A report was developed titled: “Review of approaches to account for biodiversity in long-distance food supply chains Focus on land use change and the production of crops”.

We found that:

  • Food systems are both dependent on biodiversity and a major driver of biodiversity loss.
  • Long distance supply chains displace impacts from consumers.
  • Changed practices to incorporate and conserve biodiversity can and are making a difference.

We asked: How can the good practices be both scaled-up and communicated to customers?

To that end our review aimed to provide clarity into the scope of different types of biodiversity monitoring activities, improve understanding of how those methods complement one another and highlight potential gaps from a systems perspective. Three main categories of approaches were identified and discussed: certification and standards, business guidelines and tools, and biodiversity footprints.

WP 2

Stakeholder workshops were attended by 46 stakeholders representing food retailers, standard organisations, producer cooperatives, associations, public service authorities, and science and environmental organisations. Three workshops addressed the questions:

  • What are the stakeholders’ expectations regarding the biodiversity impacts of land use of agricultural products at home and abroad?
  • Are the indicators and assessment criteria, generated by the scientific work (and presented in the review report), understood by stakeholders, e.g. in business and trade sectors?
  • How do stakeholders judge the usability of the indicators and criteria with regard to motivation and implementation of changes in their own fields?

The results were summarized in a feasibility study titled: “Biodiversity Footprints for Food Chains: Feasibility Assessment and Stakeholder Input”.