Who’s Tipping The Scales : IPES Report
A report has been released by the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES) titled “Who’s tipping the scales”, highlights how corporate capture of global Food Governance is increasingly taking place in more visible ways and raising concerns over Bluewashing.
Highlights of the Report:
- There has been a growing presence of firms in governance and spaces, staking claims to be legitimate actors.
- Over recent decades, corporations have succeeded in convincing governments that they must be central in any discussion on the future of food systems.
- The role of private corporations in food governance and decision-making has been normalized by public-private partnerships and multi-stakeholder roundtables while public governance initiatives have become heavily dependent on private funding.
- The UN Food Systems Summit, 2021 was described as a watershed moment in highlighting the importance of corporate influence in public health governance.
- Civil society organizations, food scholars, and social movements have expressed concern that the increased involvement of corporations in food governance could lead to a weakening of the public good and impact the rights of people and communities.
- Corporations have influenced global food governance in visible and invisible ways.
- Corporate influence could be seen in global food systems platforms such as the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, the Food and Land Use Coalition, and the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement.
- The Covid-19 pandemic, coupled with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and Food Inflation, aggravated the issue of corporate involvement.
- The CGIAR (Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research) relied-on funding from private firms and private philanthropic institutions connected to the food industry.
- The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation which was the CGIAR’s 2nd largest donor in 2020 contributed around USD 100 million, which was far more than what was contributed by individual governments including that of the USA.
- The FAO was also found to have closely collaborated with corporations through industry partnerships throughout its history.