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Press Release

GEF supports innovative Food Securities Fund for sustainable agriculture

October 4, 2021

The Global Environment Facility has approved a $15 million commitment, provided through its partner Conservation International, to the Food Securities Fund – an innovative new source of funding that is supporting increased transparency and accountability in agricultural value chains.

The Food Securities Fund, launched in March 2021, provides working capital loans to sustainable agriculture companies in emerging markets.

It was developed by the investment advisory firm Clarmondial, with input from leading institutional investors, agribusinesses, and conservation organizations, with the aim of generating social and environmental benefits while providing a source of credit that can help narrow the large working capital gap hindering investment in emerging markets.

Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, CEO and Chairperson of the GEF, said the support for companies committed to sustainable development could help achieve positive environmental outcomes and improve rural livelihoods.

“The Food Securities Fund’s aim to deliver change at scale in the agricultural sector in emerging and developing countries aligns with the GEF’s commitment to fostering more sustainable food systems through engagement across supply chains and with the private sector,” said Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, CEO and Chairperson of the GEF. “We see the Fund as an innovative financial solution that can mobilize capital from investors in support of global environmental benefits.”

This allocation is part of the GEF-7 Non-Grant Instrument Program, which invests in initiatives that generate meaningful contributions to United Nations conventions such as the Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the Convention to Combat Desertification. Conservation International is the GEF’s implementing agency partner for this project.

“Nature is the great provider of all life on Earth, furnishing the water we drink, air we breathe, and food we eat — to safeguard those resources, the world must transition to more sustainable behaviors. As a global community, we cannot allow the cost of this transition to fall disproportionately on lower-income countries, which often lack the means to rapidly mobilize resources and reconfigure entire sectors of the economy. Targeted support is how we ensure that sustainability is an opportunity, not a burden to bear,” said Dr. M. Sanjayan, CEO of Conservation International. “Conservation International is excited to be involved with the Food Securities Fund, a much-needed investment in rural livelihoods that will encourage planet-positive habits at every link in the agricultural supply chain.”

The Food Securities Fund is supported by DFC’s Mission Transaction Unit and USAID's Bureau for Resilience and Food Security; Convergence – the global network for blended finance; the Good Energies Foundation; the Sall Family Foundation; and EIT Climate-KIC, among other public and private organizations. A fully regulated investment fund in Luxembourg, classified under article 9 of the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Rule, the fund is advised by Clarmondial AG. Its first investment was concluded in March 2021.

About the Global Environment Facility

The Global Environment Facility was established 30 years ago on the eve of the Rio Earth Summit to tackle our planet’s most pressing environmental problems. Since then, it has provided more than $21.5 billion in grants and mobilized an additional $117 billion in co-financing for more than 5,000 projects and programs. The GEF is the largest multilateral trust fund focused on enabling developing countries to invest in nature, and supports the implementation of major international environmental conventions including on biodiversity, climate change, chemicals, and desertification. It brings together 184 member governments in addition to civil society, international organization, and private sector partners. Through its Small Grants Programme, the GEF has provided support to more than 25,000 civil society and community initiatives in 135 countries.

About Conservation International

Conservation International works to protect the critical benefits that nature provides to people. Through science, partnerships and fieldwork, Conservation International is driving innovation and investments in nature-based solutions to the climate crisis, supporting protections for critical habitats, and fostering economic development that is grounded in the conservation of nature. Conservation International works in 30 countries around the world, empowering societies at all levels to create a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable planet. Follow Conservation International's work on Conservation News, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube