Walmart Unveils Global Sustainable Agriculture Goals

Walmart launched its new global commitment to sustainable agriculture that will help small and medium sized farmers expand their businesses, get more income for their products, and reduce the environmental impact of farming, while strengthening local economies and providing customers around the world with long-term access to affordable, high-quality, fresh food.

Walmart’s sustainable agriculture strategy is divided into three broad areas:

Support farmers and their communities

By the end of 2015 in emerging markets, Walmart will help many small and mid-sized farmers gain access to markets by:

—selling $1 billion in food sourced from 1 million small and medium farmers;
—providing training to 1 million farmers and farm workers in such areas as crop selection and sustainable farming practices—the company expects half of those trained to be women; and
—increasing the income of the small and medium farmers it sources from by 10 to 15%.
—In the U.S., Walmart will double its sale of locally sourced produce and increase its purchase of select U.S. crops.

More food, fewer resources, less waste

For the first time Walmart will ask suppliers about the water, energy, fertilizer and pesticide they use per unit of food produced. The goals include:
—accelerating the agricultural focus of the Sustainability Index, beginning with a Sustainable Produce Assessment for top producers in its Global Food Sourcing network in 2011;
—investing more than $1 billion in its global fresh supply chain in the next five years; and,
—reducing food waste in its emerging market stores and clubs by 15% and by 10% in stores and clubs in its other markets by the end of 2015.

Sustainably sourced key agriculture products

Walmart will focus on two of the major contributors to global deforestation, palm oil and beef production.

—Require sustainably sourced palm oil for all Walmart private brand products globally by the end of 2015.
—Expand the already existing practice of Walmart Brazil of only sourcing beef that does not contribute to the deforestation of the Amazon rainforest to all of our companies worldwide by the end of 2015.

Walmart consulted with a number of suppliers, universities and non-government organizations to develop these goals, including WWF, Conservation International, Rainforest Alliance and The Nature Conservancy.