Innocent pledges £1m in farmer grants as part of decarbonisation plans

08 April 2024 by Acre
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​Farmers in the regenerative agriculture space are to benefit from a new £1m fund from Innocent Drinks to help the company lower its carbon footprint in the supply chain.

The company, renowned for its fruit smoothies, is investing in sustainable farming practices which it hopes will help halve its Scope 3 emissions by 2030.

The Farmer Innovation Fund was first launched in 2021 to support commercial farmers suffering from a lack of funding options towards more environmentally friendly farming methods.

This will boost soil health, water resources, biodiversity and help protect against climate change. Its aim is to make funding available to cover any losses because of trialling new innovative farming practices and will eventually cover grants between £20,000 to £500,000 for advocacy, education and collaboration outside of the firm’s supply chains.

While all of Innocent’s ingredient suppliers will be offered funding, the sustainability lens will be sharpened on those who supply priority fruits such as apples and oranges as these are higher emitters in terms of scope 3.

Nick Canney, CEO of Innocent Drinks, said: “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.”

Tom Townsend, Principal Consultant – Food & Beverage at Acre UK, said: “It has been an exceptionally challenging time for farmers around the globe as they struggle with the loss of agricultural land and the effect the climate emergency has on their crops.

“The expansion of Innocent’s fund will help ease the strain and ensure farmers are in a prime position to fully focus on sustainability and the reduction of carbon emissions.

“It is important to separate the companies who are taking action, from those making pledges. Having a good intention is a start for many businesses but tangible results are the ones that speak volumes in the long run.

“It will be interesting to see the impact this fund makes in agricultural communities and Innocent’s supply chain.”