£1m funding available for regenerative farming - Fruit & Vine

£1m funding available to support regenerative fruit & vegetable farming

Innocent Drinks has announced £1 million funding to support regenerative agriculture as it advances plans to decarbonise its supply chain. 

£1m funding available to support regenerative fruit & vegetable farming

The Farmer Innovation Fund aims to represent an increased investment to help safeguard the long-term supply of fruit and vegetables through regenerative agriculture, as Innocent Drinks advances its plans to decarbonise its supply chain. 

The fund provides a financial boost for its ingredient suppliers in projects that support the transition to low-carbon farming, higher biodiversity, and fairer farming practices. With over half of Innocent’s carbon footprint coming from its ingredients, investing in sustainable farming practices will be key to achieving a 50% reduction of its scope 3 emissions by 2030. 

£1 million in grants made available for 2024   

The fund, which first launched in March 2021, aims to address the lack of funding options available to commercial farmers by making funding available to cover losses associated with trialling new innovative farming practices. 

Funding will be offered to all Innocent ingredient suppliers, with a special focus on those providing priority fruits, such as apples and oranges. These fruits produce the highest levels of Innocent’s Scope 3 emissions. Within the total fund of £1 million, grants will be made available between £20,000 and £500,000, with those over £500,000 considered on a case-by-case basis. 

Longer term, the fund will also cover grants for advocacy, education, and collaboration beyond the company’s supply chains. Innocent will share its learnings throughout the process to accelerate the transition to sustainable farming within the wider sector.   

With a strong history of supporting innovative low-carbon farming projects, the fund’s previous winners include Döhler, who are using the fund to map out how to reduce the carbon footprint in their apple and mango supply chains, and Agrarias Manchegas, who are using the fund to optimise farm inputs via data management and precision agriculture technology.

Experts on board 

To support these aims, Innocent has brought together leading industry experts to ensure funding is allocated effectively to the projects that will have the biggest impact on farming and agricultural practices. 

This includes Dominik Klauser, regenerative agriculture director at SAI Platform, farmer and campaigner Jyoti Fernandes, Martin Lines, farmer and CEO of the Nature Friendly Farming Network, and Oliver Williams, corporate philanthropy senior manager at Virgin Unite. 

Great opportunity

Nick Canney, the CEO of Innocent Drinks said: “We’re on a mission to help people live well through the delicious goodness of fruit and veg, working to ensure everyone gets enough today and in the future. That’s why we are proud to play a part in helping our suppliers secure fruit and veg for the long term.  

 “We see the Farmer Innovation Fund as a great opportunity to weave a strong connection from our drinkers to our farmers by working with our suppliers to safeguard the future supply of fruit and vegetables. So, they can continue to play their role in delivering sustainable and healthy diets.”  

Dominik Klauser of AI Platform added: “We need to see more investment in supporting farmers on their journey towards de-risking and embracing regenerative farming practices. It’s great to see businesses like Innocent drinks committing to support the farmers within their supply chain to make this transition”. 

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