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Protect and regenerate nature Taking a stand

Nature is in danger – and time is running out.

Never have we been more sure about the damage humans are doing to the planet, and never before has the destruction been so rapid.

This issue relates to the following Sustainable Development Goals

  • Clean water and sanitation
  • Climate action
  • Life below water
  • Life on land

Average read time: 3 minutes

We all depend on nature for the raw materials in the products we use every day. But globally we are facing an ecological emergency, with an area of rainforest the size of a football pitch being lost every two seconds and one million species already threatened with extinction. If we don’t change the way land and soil is used, experts say there could be fewer than 60 harvests left.

We can’t go on like this. We need to completely transform the system.

Overhead image of a forest

Protecting and regenerating the planet

What if we could stop deforestation in its tracks – not in 10 or 20 years' time, but by 2023?

We’re on a mission to do just that. We have committed to achieving a deforestation-free supply-chain for our key crops – palm oil, soy, cocoa, paper and board and tea by 2023. We don’t have all the answers about how we’ll get there, but we have started to implement changes with our suppliers, in line with the principles outlined in our People and Nature Policy. This includes strengthening our requirements for disclosure, upholding human rights, transparency and traceability, and collaboration.

Meeting our zero deforestation goal is essential, but although ambitious, it’s not enough on its own. We must find ways to go beyond doing less harm to actively regenerating nature. This year we will be introducing our Regenerative Agriculture Principles to the suppliers and farmers in our supply chain. This means we will share a framework of action to support our suppliers in having a positive impact on soil, water, biodiversity, carbon sequestration and livelihoods.

More than 500 million smallholders rely on farming and growing to make a living – and many of them face hurdles like lack of access to good seeds and other farm inputs, gender inequality, lack of finance and poor health and sanitation. By really understanding their challenges and unlocking opportunities through training and support, we can help them prosper and become important agents in the fight to protect and regenerate our natural resources.

We’ve put a €1 billion fund behind tackling our climate and nature goals – challenges which both affect and are impacted by people, challenges which are entirely interlinked. Stopping deforestation will help us meet our climate ambitions, as well as secure the future success of our business and the livelihoods of the smallholder farmers we work with.

There is no time to waste

We’ve seen the science – we know what needs to be done. Now we need to find the right partners, the right projects and the right people to make it happen.

Our products are used by 2.5 billion people a day – that’s around a third of the people on the planet. With such a big scale, the choices we make in our business make a difference.

We hope you join us. The long-term health of our planet – and our society – depends on the choices we make now.