Natural capital is an economic metaphor for the limited stocks of physical and biological resources found on the earth. It consists of land, air, water and living organisms that provide the goods and services we use.
Food and drink businesses rely on natural capital, including services such as pollination, flood management and climate regulation. They also have an impact through land and resource use, greenhouse gas emissions, supply chain impacts and investment decisions.
Businesses that appreciate their impact and dependency on natural capital will be better positioned to respond to scrutiny of the sector's impact; natural capital increasingly influences the public policy agenda, for example through the 25 Year Environment Plan.
The FDF works with members to understand and protect natural capital. We focus on soils, biodiversity and water stewardship. The FDF joined the Natural Capital Coalition in 2015 and helped to deliver the first Natural Capital Protocol and Food Sector Guide.
Updates & milestones
Date for return of the Environment Bill confirmed
It has been confirmed that the Environment Bill will return to Parliament on 26 May to finish Commons Report stages, before proceeding to the Lords.
We Value Nature launch food & drink training
We Value Nature will be launching their business training on natural capital tailored to the food and drink sector during their We Value Nature 10-Day Challenge Event.
The first training session will take place on 16 March, 14:00 – 16:00 and will explore the relationships between food and drink businesses and nature. It will also introduce key approaches and tools to integrate natural capital into decision-making. Register
The second training session will take place on 23 March, 14:00 – 16:00 and will provide concrete guidance on how food and drink businesses can begin to approach a first natural capital assessment. Register
We Value Nature 10 Day Challenge
We Value Nature will be running a 10-day business challenge from 11-24 March 2021.
They will be offering a series of over 40 practical session and small challenges spread across the 10 days to help businesses take the next steps on their nature journey.
Sign-up to the challenge to receive daily challenges throughout the event as well as news about upcoming sessions.
Ambition 2025 progress report and mid-term review published
As highlighted in this year’s progress report, there has been exceptional progress in some areas, including:
- 55% reduction in CO2 emissions, five years before the target was due to be reached.
- 41.5% reduction in absolute water consumption in 2019 and support for the Courtauld 2025 Water Ambition.
- Contributed to the Food Waste Reduction Roadmap.
- Continued to build relationships with key stakeholders and with UK governments including through engagement on various the Plastics tax; undertook advocacy on PRN cost crisis; supported the UK Plastics Pact; and launched new guidelines on using recycled content in plastic packaging applications.
- Promoted the fewer and friendlier miles agenda through FDF’s 10 Point Checklist.
- Updated and promoted the Sustainability Resource Hub.
- Promoted the FDF Natural Capital Awareness Document.
The FDF also published a press release, with supporting quote from Environment Minister, Rebecca Pow MP. The launch has been extensively covered across the trade media.
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Ambition 2025 sets out the FDF's vision for a thriving, responsible and sustainable UK food and drink industry.
Our members have continued to significantly reduce carbon emissions and water consumption, as part of their commitment to reduce our environmental impact.
Report: Ambition 2025: Progress report 2022
30 May 2023
Despite the new set of challenges, the industry remains focused on their commitment to lead the charge for a sustainable, resilient and responsible food and drink industry, and deliver on our ambition to reach Net Zero by 2040 – a decade earlier than government targets.Read more
Report: Ambition 2025: Progress report 2021
10 March 2022
In 2020, the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) and our members achieved the target of reducing CO2 emissions set in the Ambition 2025 commitment – five years earlier than planned. In 2021 we set our sights even higher.Read more