30 April 2021, Monheim: Better Life Farming (BLF), Bayer’s multi-stakeholder global partnership model, received a commendation honor at the fifth edition of the United Nations Economic Cooperation and Integration (UNECE) International Public Private Partnerships (PPP’s) Forum as part of its 2021 Build Back Better Infrastructure Awards.
Build Back Better was also the theme for this year’s UNECE International PPP Forum, which was held virtually from April 22-26. In an unprecedented time when the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted communities globally, UNECE held a competition to find the most resilient projects that involved public-private partnerships throughout the world which put people at the heart of their operations and could help communities maintain, rebuild and move forward within a post pandemic environment. UNECE received 66 submissions from 25 countries. Each had to fulfill at least one of the following characteristics: stakeholder and community empowerment; poverty and inequalities; women’s empowerment; environmental sustainability, climate change and resilience.
BLF, which provides holistic and innovative solutions for smallholder farmers in developing economies, was selected for its stakeholder engagement supporting the enhancement of livelihoods in rural communities. Jointly, with the farming communities in Indonesia, India and Bangladesh and more than 20 local partnerships driven by its global partners – Bayer, Netafim and the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the BLF model provides entrepreneurial opportunities for men and women alike, to own and operate Better Life Farming Centers. The centers, which currently reach more than 300,000 smallholders in the mentioned countries, allow farmers to purchase seeds, crop protection inputs, irrigation solutions, as well as have improved access to markets and financial solutions. The model is also backed by the local governments which support BLF’s expansion as part of their rural development strategies.
“Agriculture is the fundamental backbone of rural economies,” said Lino Dias, Vice President of Smallholder Farming for Bayer. “This means with an effective partnership-led business ecosystem to address rural smallholder farmers’ challenges, and by enabling them to thrive, we will be improving not only their livelihoods but also enhancing rural development. This contributes to many of the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals aimed at ending hunger and achieving food security.”
Currently there are 550 million smallholder farmers worldwide with farms that are smaller than 10 hectares, many of which are even smaller than two hectares. Almost half of these small and marginal farms are operated by women.
Better Life Farming was one of 6 projects to receive the Build Back Better commendation recognition. BLF aims to grow the number of its Centers from currently more than 640 to exceed 1,000 centers by the end of this year. To view a video outlining the Better Life Farming concept, click here. Bayer is committed to enabling 100 million smallholder farmers in low and middle income countries develop their farming potential as part of the company’s 2030 sustainability commitments.