Incentivizing food systems transformation

The World Economic Forum and McKinsey & Company drafted a report to outline four pathways for creating the right incentives for food systems transformation.

The four pathways for creating the right incentives for food systems transformation are:

  1. Repurposing public investment and policies; to provide positive incentives to produce healthy food for people and planet.
  2. Business model innovation pathway; to prioritize environment, social and financial outcomes.
  3. Institutional investment pathway; to set higher standards with respect to how companies target environmental and social outcomes.
  4. Consumer behavioural change pathway: to shift consumers demands to environmentally and socially responsible nutritious products.

Incentivizing food systems transformation will not be straightforward and will require substantial investments and efforts to manage complexities and trade-offs. In addition, incentive mechanisms in food systems will have a greater impact if they are complemented by incentives from other sectors. It will also be important to recognize that there is no one-size-fits all approach for realigning food system incentives. Governments must balance several important economic, social and environmental development objectives alongside national security objectives while supporting food systems.

Action areas

There are five action areas that can help the global community incentivize transformation. The first is alignment from actors on a vision for food systems that meet the needs of people and planet. Second, identifying scalable models and approaches accross the four pathways that participants in the food system can rally around for learning and prototyping in the pursuit of improvement and replication. Third, is system leadership to cultivate a shared vision for change, empower widespread innovation and actoin and enbable mutual accountability to accomplish systems change. Fourth, collective country-level actions to establish and implement an incentives agenda. Fifth and last, collective action at the global and regional level including building consensus, resolving cross-border challenges and developing new partnerships and business models that manage risk and improve capital flows and investment outcomes.

Further reading

The report can be found here, to PDF-document here.