Value Change: The 2022 Food & Agriculture Working Group under way 

Value Change: The 2022 Food & Agriculture Working Group under way 

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The Value Change Initiative’s (VCI) Food & Agriculture Working Group, in its third iteration, is driving forward with co-creation of credible Scope 3 accounting and reporting in the context of agricultural value chains. Launched in January, the working group brings together over 18 organizations, including Danone, Rabobank, General Mills, ESMC, Bayer, Nutrien and Land o’ Lakes. Participants will meet again on June 15th for the third session to discuss case studies on implementation challenges. 

Food and agricultural companies face common challenges in Scope 3 accounting and reporting 

Food and agricultural companies have a critical role to play in global decarbonization efforts. The latest data finds that the world’s agri-food systems contribute to 31% of human-caused GHG emissions. Conscious of the role they can play, an increasing number of food and agricultural companies are setting science-based targets and making commitments to reduce Scope 3 emissions only to face many complex challenges on the how: how to report on, account for and claim value chain emissions reductions and removals?  

“We are partnering with more than 140’000 farmers around the globe so the complexity and granularity we are facing when it comes to measuring the impact of what we are doing on the field is very high. We are keen to learn from Working Group participants and find solutions to overcome our challenges in terms of MRV processes, measuring our impact on the ground and materializing those efforts towards our targets”. Marie Pierre Bousquet LeComte, Science-Based Targets Implementation Director, Danone   

“When it comes to Scope 3, wherever you look – origination, financing, MRV, certification – there are challenges and lots of companies get stuck. It’s really for the benefit of the agricultural sector and humanity as a whole to make sure we find agreements on how to reduce barriers and get moving quickly.” Samuel Aloni, Director, Food Chain Development, Agoro Carbon, Yara International 

The goal is to co-create best-practice solutions to help solve accounting and reporting challenges 

Participants of this year’s Food & Agriculture Working Group will aim to extend the existing Value Change Guidance to additional topics, such as removals and land-based emissions. This extension would ensure that the realities of Scope 3 accounting faced by the sector are supported all-the-while being in alignment with leading international frameworks such as Greenhouse Gas Protocol. The working group will help define best practice solutions, determining which critical gaps and concepts from the guidance need to be adjusted and where more sector-specific guidelines, for instance market-based allocation for supply sheds, should be developed given the evolution and the complexity of the landscape.  

The working group follows VCI’s unique approach to corporate engagement and co-creation 

The five sessions of the Working Group are designed using a structured-learning approach and created for participants to deepen their understanding of the Value Change Guidance, to learn from one another by sharing their experiences in strategy or implementation, and to collectively develop solutions that pave the way for meaningful Scope 3 action in their sector. An extension (addendum) of the Value Change Guidance is then produced, completing this loop where members learn from the VCI and the VCI learns from its members.  

“We are here to learn. Learn how we can apply the guidance to meet our own goals but also how, in the agriculture industry, we can help our food chain partners complement and meet their sustainable goals too. So really coming together in the supply chain, supply shed accounting framework is what we are looking to understand better”. Arlene Cotie, VP, Global Ecosystem Product Management, Bayer 

“We know data is a gap and a pain point for Scope 3 calculations, and we want to bring our knowledge and experience in collecting high-quality field data to support the calculation of these carbon impact factors at the supply shed level”.  Lulu Li, Strategic Ventures Manager, Sustainability, Farmers Edge  

The Working Group will run until November 2022 with a final event during the UNFCCC COP 27.