HowGood and Bioversity International Partner to Bring Critical Data to Food Brands October 22, 2019 by Eva Clark
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New Partnership Supports Food Industry Efforts to Improve Agricultural Biodiversity

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(New York, NY) — A new partnership between Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and HowGood brings together two leaders in the effort to protect and enhance agricultural biodiversity. With critically-needed insight into the current state of our food and agricultural system, the two organizations will work together to bring decision-support tools to forward-thinking companies seeking to improve their environmental and social impact.

“The food industry is at an unprecedented crossroads,” says Ethan Soloviev, Chief Innovation Officer at HowGood and owner of a small regenerative farm in upstate NY. “Choices are being made today that will impact our planet for generations, and it is essential that the best research is put forward to support those decisions. The Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT has led the charge on agricultural biodiversity research for years, and as part of these efforts it has produced the Agrobiodiversity Index. This is a tool that helps food systems actors understand to what extent they are sustainably using and conserving agricultural biodiversity, and gives insight on how much they are exposed to risks, including climate change and pests and diseases. We are excited to bring these findings to Consumer Packaged Goods decision-makers through our software solutions.”

The Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT delivers research-based solutions that harness agricultural biodiversity and sustainably transform food systems to improve people’s lives. Alliance solutions address the global challenges of poverty, malnutrition, climate change, land degradation and biodiversity loss. The Alliance is part of CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. Their partnership with HowGood, an independent research and sustainability software company, delivers on their mission by making it easier for food brands to prioritize agrobiodiversity impact in their sourcing decisions.

HowGood develops decision-support tools to enable sustainability-minded product formulations. Their software is powered by a research database that considers factors ranging from how a product’s ingredient is grown to the conditions under which it is processed, with an interface that is engineered to provide actionable insights to brands and retailers seeking to improve the impact of their supply chain. The addition of the best-in-class agrobiodiversity data from the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT will elevate their impact measurement tools with deep insights into the current state of crop and species diversity and agricultural land use.

Industry demands for high-quality sustainability data are at an all-time high

The partnership comes at a critical juncture in the food industry. Small and large brands alike are realigning their priorities to meet consumer demand for sustainable products. Announcements like the Danone-led One Planet Business for Biodiversity (OP2B) coalition, which includes 19 major food and beverage corporations, signal a turning of the tide in the prioritization of agricultural practices in product development. With the weight of Big Food’s resources being directed toward responsible sourcing, there is an urgent need for high quality research to be made available and accessible.

”It is clear that something is changing in the world of food companies. Big food producers and retailers are realizing that low-cost unsustainable practices today will result in enormous burdens tomorrow – in terms of production losses and lower food quality for example. Consumers are becoming more aware of their food choices and their impact on the planet and human health. They increasingly ask businesses to provide more nutritious food and to produce it in a more sustainable way. Food companies that increase the use of agricultural biodiversity will be those better able to respond to these requests and will thrive in a world of changing climate and increasingly scarce resources”, highlighted Juan Lucas Restrepo, Director General of Bioversity International and CEO-Designate of the Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture.

If you are a brand or retailer looking for resources for sustainable product development, contact Ethan Soloviev at [email protected]

For more information on the Agrobiodiversity Index, contact Chiara Villani at [email protected]

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