Rais­ing the Bar on Sus­tain­abil­i­ty Stan­dards — unveil­ing the lat­est LEAF Mar­que Standard

Fol­low­ing an exten­sive 2‑year pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion, we have pub­lished the lat­est ver­sion of the LEAF Mar­que Stan­dard, includ­ing a rec­om­mend­ed con­trol point on the use of car­bon foot­print­ing tools.

The revisions to the Standard, which underpins our global environmental assurance system for more sustainable, regenerative farming across all farming sectors, have been made to raise the bar on important sustainable farming issues like greenhouse gases, carbon sequestration and carbon footprinting.


Vicky Robinson, Director, Technical explained:

“LEAF is a listening organisation and works hard to understand and meet evolving expectations of more regenerative farming, while maintaining a programme that is also practical, accessible and science-based. We strongly believe that this new version of the LEAF Marque Standard strikes the right balance between setting a high ambition for sustainability with the need to make sure the requirements are practical for the best performing farming businesses around the world.

With the ever increasing reach of LEAF Marque both in the UK and worldwide, these changes represent extremely good news for the health of our farms, food, planet and people.”


The new version of the Standard includes developments in the following areas:

Climate Resilience

Landscape and nature conservation

Greenhouse gases and Carbon Sequestration

Carbon Footprinting

Soil Health

Nutrient Management

Crop Health and Protection

Deforestation

Animal Husbandry


Commenting on the publication of the revised Standard, LEAF Marque Chairman, Tom Green added:

“LEAF welcomes constructive stakeholder engagement and dialogue and I wish to thank the many individuals and organisations who engaged in the LEAF Marque Standard consultation process. Third-party scrutiny and stakeholder engagement are central to our values and our commitment to respond to the constantly evolving field of sustainable farming. By honouring this commitment, we can maintain our world-leading standards.

The LEAF Marque Standard is continually evolving. We are proud of the revisions we have made. The farming industry is facing huge changes. Much attention is focussed on the nature of our trading relationships with other countries – both within and outside the EU, coupled with challenges around climate change, population growth, resource protection, market volatility and increasing political uncertainties.

These are issues shared by farmers across the globe. Against this background, LEAF Marque provides a powerful tool to accelerate incremental improvements at a farm level. I take this opportunity to thank our many supply chain partners and farmers as it is their commitment and leadership which enables us, collectively, to drive profound reforms in the delivery of more sustainable global farming and food systems.”


Since its launch in 2003, LEAF Marque has provided a credible, independent, third-party mechanism recognising and rewarding good sustainable farming practice in the marketplace.

Representing all farming sectors, including fresh produce, combinable crops, livestock, flowers and ornamentals, LEAF Marque is the leading global assurance system for more sustainable farming, incorporating all the principles of regenerative agriculture. It currently operates in 19 countries and is used by leading UK retailers and food brands including Waitrose, Tesco, Lidl, M&S, Jordans and Quaker Oats. In the UK, 48% of fruit and vegetables are grown on LEAF Marque certified businesses.

The 2-year public consultation involved a broad range of stakeholders including LEAF members, farmers, scientists, environmental organisations, government bodies, commercial partners and members of the public. The latest version of the LEAF Marque Standard was published on the 1st October 2022 and will take effect from the 1st April 2023.

For more information on the new LEAF Marque Standard click here.

To find out more about LEAF Marque’s Global Impacts visit here.