There is increasing evidence that improved agrobiodiversity (that is, the diversity of crop and livestock genetic resources – domesticated or wild – which contributes to agriculture and food production) can enhance human nutrition through several pathways. These include the provision of genetic resources for future adaptation (e.g., biofortification), improving dietary diversity and quality, and enhancing income. However, shifting food systems towards the provision of more biodiverse, sustainable, and healthy diets will take time.
There are public policies as well as private financing approaches that have potential to stimulate the production and consumption of more agrobiodiverse food. These include fiscal policies and subsidies as well as innovative financing initiatives, which aim to increase the production of affordable, nutritious foods. In addition, there are a few examples of large private sector-led initiatives that are helping to drive change.
This paper summarises a number of these policies, financing mechanisms, and private-sector initiatives and discusses how each approach might be applied in order to mainstream agrobiodiversity within food systems to reduce the risk of poor nutrition and improve planetary health.