Small animals, big performance: LIFE Food & Biodiversity publishes Easy Guide about insect protection in standards of the food sector

Small animals, big performance: LIFE Food & Biodiversity publishes Easy Guide about insect protection in standards of the food sector

The Global Nature Fund, coordinator of the EU LIFE Food & Biodiversity project, presents a guide that supports companies in the food industry to make insect and biodiversity protection part of their sourcing strategy.

© Udo Gattenlöhner
Bonn, June 24th, 2020: About 80 percent of all plant species that secure our food supply depend on pollinating. This new easy guide supports product, quality and purchasing managers of companies in the food industry by detecting relevant fields of action, which should be covered by a standard or their own procurement guidelines. "Our experiences in international and national agricultural production reveals certain agricultural activities that are of high value for the protection of insects", explains Tobias Ludes, project manager at the GNF.

In Germany exist three native honey bee breeds and almost 600 wild bee species. Their performance is essential for wild and cultivated plants to produce fruit and seeds. Yet, many environmental impacts threaten bees and other pollinators, including pesticides, introduced parasites, lack of habitat and air pollution.

The food sector has great potential to counter-act some of these threats by setting its own requirements for agricultural producers or using effective food standards. "It is a central concern for us that the protection of insects is clearly formulated in procurement guidelines of food companies and the criteria of food standards. In any case insect protection has to be consistently implemented in practice", states Tobias Ludes.

The Easy Guide for Insect Protection is the second guideline formulated in the framework of the EU project LIFE Food & Biodiversity. The first Easy Guide explains how companies can assess the effectiveness of biodiversity criteria in standards and labels of the food sector. Both Easy Guides are available in several languages and can be downloaded here.
The LIFE Food & Biodiversity Project is directed at standard setting organizations and companies with individual sourcing requirements. A European consortium of Global Nature Fund, Lake Constance Foundation, Fundación Global Nature, Instituto Superior Técnico, Agentur auf!, Solagro, agence good for good provide practical support to biodiversity performance of the food industry. It is supported by the EU LIFE programme, Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt and a range of food standards and companies.