Kepak commits to regenerative agriculture practices

Kepak is pleased to become the first Irish business to have committed to a new global framework for regenerative agriculture practices, having been the only beef processor to have played a central in role creating and testing it over the past two years.

The framework, launched today by the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform (SAI), provides the industry with a globally aligned approach for the transition to regenerative agriculture practices.

SAI is a leading non-profit driving global development in sustainable agriculture, and Kepak is the only beef processor globally to subscribe to its new framework’s aims. Other global businesses including Nestlé, Danone, Unilever and PepsiCo have also committed to the new global standard.

With climate change set to decrease the productivity of farming globally by up to 30%, we are at a critical moment for the agriculture industry. The Regenerating Together framework and broader programme unite the food and beverage industry to bring about large-scale, long-term systemic change to future-proof global food supply.

In collaboration with farmers, academia, NGOs and the committed businesses, SAI Platform has established an aligned approach to agriculture that aims to mitigate and adapt to the impact of climate change, improve soil health, support biodiversity, retain water in the soil and reduce its consumption while keeping farmers’ business viability central in a just transition approach. SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together programme aims to unite the agriculture industry with a common goal – a resilient and productive food system that will regenerate natural ecosystems and improve the quality of farmers’ livelihoods.

SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together framework is designed for practical use at farm-level to drive farmers’ transition to regenerative agriculture. It will allow crops, dairy and beef farmers anywhere in the world to work with supply chain partners to achieve measurable regenerative agriculture outcomes and enables the industry to translate the often-ambiguous concepts of regenerative agriculture into action at farm level. In addition, the framework will be integrated into SAI Platform’s existing industry solutions including the European Roundtable for Beef Sustainability (ERBS), the Farm Sustainability Assessment (FSA) and the Sustainable Dairy Partnership (SDP).

Developed in consultation with farmers, academics and NGOs, the framework will assess, monitor and verify farm practices to aid the global transition towards regenerative agriculture.  SAI Platform’s Regenerating Together programme identifies four key areas of impact – water, soil, biodiversity and climate – and has devised four clear steps through which to enact the framework: risk screening assessment, outcome selection, the adoption of principles and practices and the monitoring and assessment of progress.

Rebecca Thomson, Kepak Group Sustainability Manager commented:

“Having been part of the SAI Regenerative Agriculture steering committee for the past two years, Kepak have been involved in the development and piloting of the Regenerative Agriculture framework on supplier farms in the Ireland and the UK. Based on the results we can see the potential this can have to provide clarity and consistency at farm level which will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, restore and enhance water quality and biodiversity and regenerate soils which will embed the agri food sector in the circular regenerative bioeconomy.”

Dionys Forster, Director General, SAI Platform commented:

“At SAI Platform we have a proven track record of developing industry initiatives and programmes that continuously improve sustainability and deliver measurable outcomes in the agriculture sector. With our Regenerating Together programme, we are proud to be driving collaboration across the food and beverage industry at what is a critical moment for the sector. Regenerative agriculture is the way forward to ensure productivity and farm ecosystem viability – we must act now and further transition towards farming practices that protect the future of our planet. We look forward to continuing to work with our members and other industry players as we build towards this common goal.”

Read More