Pension funds launch Principles for Responsible Investment in Farmland

Published on Food Crisis and the Global Land Grab, Source: UNPRI, September 6, 2011.

A group of institutional investors currently representing US$1.3 trillion in assets have today launched the Principles for Responsible Investment in Farmland (the “Farmland Principles”) with the goal of improving the sustainability, transparency and accountability of investments in farmland.

Recent years have seen a strong increase in investor interest in farmland.  The Farmland Principles provide institutional investors with best practice guidelines for: 

  • - Promoting environmental sustainability (Principle 1)
  • - Respecting labour and human rights (Principle 2)
  • - Respecting existing land and resource rights (Principle 3)
  • - Upholding high business and ethical standards (Principle 4)
  • - Reporting on activities and progress towards implementing and promoting the Principles (Principle 5)

The Farmland Principles were developed and are endorsed by AP2 (Sweden), ABP (Netherlands), APG (Netherlands), ATP (Denmark), BT Pension Scheme (UK), Hermes EOS (UK), PGGM (Netherlands) and TIAA-CREF (USA), all of whom are signatories to the UN-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).  These institutions are committed to implementing the Farmland Principles in their investment policies and practices.  Other institutional investors are invited to also endorse the Farmland Principles and use them as a framework for developing their own responsible farmland investment practices … //

… The institutions that launched the Farmland Principles are also part of a newly formed PRI investor working group that will develop implementation support and tools to further advance responsible investment in farmland.  The institutions are planning to review the Farmland Principles based on implementation experience and stakeholder feedback.

More information is available on the PRI website at PRI /commodities and related investments. (full text).

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