Food and land use context in India

India is home to 17 percent of the world’s population, holds 15 percent of its livestock and eight percent of biodiversity on just over two percent of the global land area. Around 70 percent of the rural households in India depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. Yet, the sector is facing challenges such as poor access to credit and modern inputs, scarce water resources, land degradation and inadequate processing infrastructure. Climate change poses further risks to food security, water supply, livelihoods, and farm incomes.

It is with a sense of urgency that India must transform its food and land use systems.

FOLU activity in India

From farm all the way to state level, FOLU India seeks to bring about a more sustainable food and land use economy. The platform is spearheaded by a group of four organizations including the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), the Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), the Revitalising Rainfed Agriculture Network (RRAN) and the World Resources Institute (WRI) India The team works closely with other organizations such the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA).

FOLU India currently prioritizes its activities around: 1) healthy diets 2) productive and regenerative agriculture and integrated farming systems that support food and nutritional needs 3) food loss and waste reduction 4) nature protection and restoration 5) science, technology and research to leverage the digital revolution 6) sustainable livelihoods and improved gender and social inclusion. 

Guided by these six priorities, the platform supports research and development and works with subnational governments through ground-level projects. These include:  

  • The Sustainable Rainfed Agriculture Programme, which aims to develop three state-level strategy action plans for the states of Andhra Pradesh in the southeast, Telangana in the south, and Maharashtra in the west, to promote large-scale adoption of sustainable and regenerative agricultural practices.  
  • The Synergized Action Programme, in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, supports the facilitation of a governance structure that enables cross-collaboration between ministries to transform India’s agricultural sector at large.  

In 2021, FOLU India launched the Coalition for Responsible Sourcing and Trade of Commodities (CREST) together with the Centre for Responsible Business (CRB), the Sustainable Trade Initiative India (IDH), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) India, and WRI India. The main objective of the coalition is to lead India’s stewardship in global trade and to share learnings with countries that export agricultural and forest-related products to the country.  

Country reports

Events in India

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Key Contacts

Parul Jain

Junior Project Associate

Devisha Poddar

Senior Project Associate

Seth Cook 

FOLU China & India Project Manager 
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Ambassadors in India

Sunny Verghese

Co-Founder and Group Chief Executive Officer, Olam International

Ajay Vir Jakhar

Chairman, Bharat Krishak Samaj (Farmers’ Forum India)

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