Roadmap to Nature Positive: Foundations for the agri-food system – row crop commodities subsector


12 September, 2023



“There is no business on a dead planet.” This rings particularly true for the global agri-food system, where the most fundamental dependencies and impacts tie directly to the land. Agri-food contributes around one-third of all GHGs and 70% of freshwater use, and is the primary driver of global land-use change and biodiversity loss. With food demand growing by up to 50% by 2050, agri-food simultaneously poses the most substantial threat to nature and offers the greatest potential to halt and reverse nature loss. We stand at a pivotal juncture today, presented with a critical opportunity to rethink how we produce, source, transport and consume agricultural products.   

WBCSD’s Roadmap to Nature Positive: Foundations for the agri-food system serves as business guidance to ensure the system plays its part in halting and reversing nature loss by 2030 – the mission at the heart of the Global Biodiversity Framework. This Roadmap considers the full agri-food value chain, with a main focus on row crop commodity production. It includes landscape deep dives illustrating nature-positive approaches across diverse global contexts and row crop rotations. 

Following the TNFD “LEAP” approach, we identify the most significant dependencies, impacts, risks, and opportunities for companies up and down the value chain, which in turn inform priority action areas and transformative levers where business should lead today:  

  • Avoiding deforestation and habitat conversion 
  • Reducing negative impacts and regenerating farm ecosystems through improved farming outcomes 
  • Restoring high-priority landscapes and building farmer livelihood resilience 
  • Reducing food loss and waste throughout the value chain 
  • Transforming the system through key levers of change to support these objectives 

The Roadmap was developed through extensive engagement with 19 WBCSD member companies in the agri-food system and over a dozen partner organizations.  

In the next phase of this work, we will build on these Foundations with a focus on performance and accountability including guidance on indicators and metrics, data needs and target-setting.  

About the Roadmaps to Nature Positive 

WBCSD’s Roadmaps to Nature Positive provide step-by-step guidance for companies to accelerate credible nature-positive ambition, action and accountability. The Roadmaps provide in-depth analysis and guidance relevant for all businesses, as well as specific guidance for four high-impact systems: land use (specifically, the agri-food system and the forest products sector), built environment system and energy system. Read more about WBCSD’s Roadmaps to Nature Positive