Report Synopsis

Social Licence: A Social and Environmental Responsibility

Renee Anderson

Agriculture plays a vital role in the well-being of rural communities, food security, employment, and societal improvement. Adopting best management practices (BMP) ensures socially responsible farming by safeguarding public health, promoting food safety, and supporting sustainable livelihoods for farmers and rural communities. These practices contribute to vibrant rural economies, enhance community resilience, and foster social cohesion, promoting a healthy and sustainable agricultural sector.

By embracing industry BMP, farmers fulfill their social and environmental responsibilities, aligning their agricultural practices with broader goals of sustainable development, environmental stewardship, and community well-being. This primarily occurs through production-related practices and investment in natural capital improvements.

Through industry-led science-based practices and the adoption of precision agriculture methods and agritech, growers can:

  • minimise soil erosion,
  • enhance soil health and fertility,
  • conserve water,
  • reduce inputs.

Furthermore, their investments in wildlife corridors, habitat restoration, and collaborative projects with consumers and retailers can:

  • improve farm biodiversity,
  • preserve essential species and ecosystems,
  • protect soils from wind and water erosion, 
  • promote on-farm biodiversity for future generations.

Globally, agriculture is both affected by – and contributes to – climate change. Embracing BMP that promotes climate-smart strategies helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase soil carbon sequestration. Continuously improving practices enhance the resilience of agricultural systems by improving water management, soil health, and crop diversification, enabling farmers to adapt to changing climate conditions.

Adopting industry-led BMP in agriculture ensures social responsibility, environmental sustainability, and community well-being. Farmers contribute to a more resilient agricultural sector for present and future generations by minimising negative impacts, promoting biodiversity, and addressing climate change.

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