A Roadmap Towards Water Security for Food and Drink Supply
Protecting critical water resources for food supply, for nature, and for local communities.
The Courtauld 2030 Water Roadmap ('A Roadmap towards Water Security for Food & Drink Supply') sets out a vision and key pathways to address the challenges we collectively face in protecting critical water resources for food supply, for nature and for local communities.
- It is a joint vision for the outcome we are seeking across the UK food & drink industry as a whole: to deliver the Courtauld Commitment 2030 water target that 50% of the UK’s fresh food is sourced from areas with sustainable water management.
- The Courtauld 2030 Water Roadmap also aims to deliver an important contribution towards UN Sustainable Development Goal 6 (availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all), as well as protecting and restoring biodiversity, and contributing to Net Zero goals through the implementation of nature-based solutions.
As well as businesses continuing to increase water use efficiency in their own operations, our combined objective is that, by 2030, the UK food & drink industry will have:
- Helped to achieve sustainable water management to improve the quality and availability of water at catchment scale in the top 20 most important product & ingredient sourcing areas in the UK and overseas
- With an overall target by 2030 that: 50% of fresh food is sourced from areas with sustainable water management3
“The challenges facing us on water do not discriminate between companies, countries or crops. Collaborating with partners via the Courtauld 2025 commitment ensures that we maximise our impact and do not duplicate effort. We support the call for others to join in collective action in key sourcing areas and look forward to working together to develop a future we all want to see."
Initial focus in the UK is in four catchment areas identified as being critical areas for sourcing key foods such as fresh produce, dairy and crops. All currently suffer water stress in terms of quality and availability they also all have existing best practice initiatives that we seek to build upon through sharing best practice and encouraging greater collaboration and alignment.
The four UK project areas are:
- East Anglia (CamEO / Broadlands) – Lead by Norfolk Rivers Trust and building on the Water Sensitive Farming initially established by WWF-UK, Coca-Cola and Tesco the project provides confidential independent farm advice and funding on soil and water, to improve both the quality and quantity of water available in the catchment.
- Wye & Usk - The Wye Agri food partnership aims to build on the led by the Wye & Usk Foundation and building on the exemplary approach of the Catchment partnership The project focuses is reducing diffuse pollution from all types of agriculture soil health by providing expert confidential advice to growers.
- Kent (Medway) – The Medway is one of the most water stressed regions of the country and home a significant part of the UK soft fruit industry. The Holistic Water for Horticulture project is looking at innovative ways to improve water self-sufficiency and the resilience of the sector by implementing nature based solutions around poly tunnels.
- South West (Tamar) – Led by the West Country Rivers Trust the project focuses on the dairy sector, building on the exemplar UpStream Thinking project. In addition to working with farmers the project is support greater collaboration between key agri-businesses in the catchment as well as testing sustainable approaches to PES (Payment for Ecosystem Services) schemes.
For more information about the projects and how to get involved contact [email protected]