In 2021, the global spotlight is on our food systems. All human life depends on them, feeding every mouth, impacting livelihoods, providing millions of people with a job. At the same time, food systems are highly fragile, impacting and being impacted by climate change and environmental degradation, with grave implications for social equality, health, livelihoods, food security and nutrition. In many parts of the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare these fragilities and exacerbated their effects.
We know that our current systems must change if we are to achieve a sustainable future for all, as envisaged by the SDGs, and it is clear that the private sector has a key role to play in this. The world needs companies to contribute to food systems transformation by taking care of the environment, ensuring access to healthy diets and putting people at the heart of their business models and activities.
The Food and Agriculture Benchmark is the first of its kind to assess companies across the entirety of the food and agriculture system, from farm to fork.
Today we publish the methodology to explain how we will assess 350 food companies. Our methodologies and benchmarks serve as road maps for companies, setting out the steps they can take to meet the needs and expectations of their stakeholders.
This methodology brings together the key topics and issues on which society expects companies to take action and is the result of extensive expert and stakeholder consultations over the past two years. The report describes the development process for the methodology, indicators, approaches to scoring and weighting, and a timeline for the benchmark.