Leading global sustainable farming organisation, LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming) has today (26 March 2021) released its latest Global Impacts Report, showing the continued progress of LEAF Marque certified businesses in delivering more sustainable, climate positive farming and food systems. Key highlights include:
- Nearly half (45%) of the UK’s fruit and vegetables are grown by LEAF Marque certified businesses - including 98% leeks, 95% broccoli and celery, 90% lettuce and 86% asparagus
- 21 countries with LEAF Marque certified businesses
- 67% have one or more types of renewable energy generation on-farm and 39% use a carbon footprint tool
- 42% routinely measure soil organic matter
- 83% manage reservoirs for water quality, safety and wildlife
- 84% regularly monitor animal welfare indicators
- Average of 13% habitat area on LEAF Marque farms including hedges, ponds, habitat banks and reservoirs
Showcasing the achievements of its growers, the report highlights the steps being taken to meet important global targets as set out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the UK government’s 25 Year Environment Plan. These include reducing carbon emissions, building healthier and more productive soils, delivering better air and water quality and enhancing biodiversity.
In the UK, nearly half (45%) of all fruit and vegetables are produced sustainably by LEAF Marque certified businesses, including the majority of leeks (98%), broccoli and celery (95%) and lettuce (90%). Globally, 299,185 hectares of land is producing LEAF Marque crops with cereals and horticulture being the two largest sectors. The report also reveals continued growth in the flower and ornamental sector.
Launching the report, Tom Green, LEAF Marque Chairman, said:
“With farmers from 21 countries worldwide being certified LEAF Marque and 45% of UK fruit and vegetables being produced on LEAF Marque farms, this report tells an encouraging story. These numbers not only recognise the management practices used on those farms and the demonstrated incremental benefits for sustainability but, critically, they also provide independent assurance to the many brands, retailers and consumers that are supplied by those producers. I would like to thank our many supply chain partners and farmers, whose commitment and leadership enables us, together, to continue to ‘raise the bar’ for the good of our planet and future generations.”
UK LEAF Marque farmers boost biodiversity
The report also highlights the extent to which LEAF Marque farmers are boosting biodiversity and protecting natural eco systems through the creation and maintenance of:
- 7,228,444m of hedges (the distance from the UK to Kenya)
- 1,062 ponds
- 221,860m of habitat banks (the distance from London to Sheffield)
- 383,768 in-field trees
- 1,999,434m of non-hedge boundaries
- 629 reservoirs
LEAF’s Global Impacts Report 2021 is available online here.
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