In recent years, the World Economic Forum has consistently ranked water crises as a top global concern. Population growth, pollution and climate change are all increasingly threatening water availability and water quality. With the global food sector using 70 percent of the world’s freshwater supply, food and beverage companies can and must play a powerful role in protecting water quality and quantity.
Ceres and WWF created the AgWater Challenge to advance water stewardship among the world’s most influential food and beverage companies.
About the AgWater Challenge
The AgWater Challenge helps companies advance their sustainable sourcing strategies. Participating companies receive support in analyzing water issues within their supply chains, and in refining or making new sourcing commitments that enable them to better address their risk. Ceres and WWF work with participating companies to develop time-bound and measurable commitments to:
- • Reduce the water impacts associated with key agricultural commodities
- • Implement locally-relevant strategies to mitigate risk in agricultural areas where water is scarce
- • Support and incentivize farmers and other agricultural producers to strengthen water stewardship practices
In turn, participating companies benefit from:
- • Technical assistance from leading NGOs
- • Peer-to-peer learning on best practices for managing water risks and challenges with meaningful goal setting
- • Opportunities to earn recognition as an AgWater Challenge participant for responding to water challenges, through new actions and commitments
- • Improved standing in Ceres’ next Feeding Ourselves Thirsty ranking
- • Insight from communications experts on how to effectively tell their sustainability story to a range of key stakeholders
Representing over $123 billion in annual net revenue, Diageo, General Mills, Hain Celestial Group, Inc., Hormel Foods, Kellogg Company, PepsiCo, and Danone North America (formerly WhiteWave Foods) were the first AgWater stewards to join the Challenge in 2016. Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), the first agriculture products company, and Target, the first retailer, joined the cohort in 2018. Through the Challenge, these companies have made over 25 commitments related to strengthening the water stewardship within their agriculture supply chains.