COP15 biodiversity agreement must recognise importance of smallholders
As crucial custodians of some of the world’s most important ecosystems, smallholder farmers must be at the heart of a global agreement to reverse the loss of earth’s natural habitats, at COP15.
Protecting and expanding biodiversity is crucial to the world’s health, but it also has the power to strengthen food systems and improve the livelihoods of communities that live and farm in ecologically vital landscapes.
Discussions at this year’s COP15 summit have highlighted the links between biodiversity and agriculture, exploring ways nature and farming can work together effectively. The theme of this year’s event – Ecological Civilization: Building a Shared Future for All Life on Earth – also aligns closely with our mission to improve the lives of the poorest commodities growers.
Through our investments we are supporting agribusinesses that both secure the futures of smallholder farmers and promote greater biodiversity in the fields and forests in which they farm. For us achieving social and environmental good are two equally important and intertwined objectives.
Tying local development and economic opportunity to biodiversity programmes is key to their long-term success. For example, several of the agribusinesses we support provide training in sustainable agroforestry techniques that promote healthy eco-systems, nutritious soils and crop diversity. In turn, this generates extra revenue streams for farmers by introducing new crops and creates resilience by improving the health of the environments they are grown in, it also enables farmers to access more lucrative markets for sustainable products.
CFC Managing Director Amb. Sheikh Mohammed Belal said: “Improving biodiversity and enhancing smallholders livelihoods go hand in hand. At the CFC we are working with innovative businesses that seek to achieve both, because that is the best way to protect the environment and secure the future of rural communities in developing countries. As leaders attempt to form a global agreement to halt nature loss, we call on them to recognise and support the critical role smallholder farmers can play in this mission.”
To find out more about how we’re investing in agribusinesses that support diversity, contact us here.