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Case Studies

The following cases compose a non-exhaustive list of academic papers, policy interventions and business solutions which exemplify steps towards a true True Value of Food approach.

Knowledge Repository

Prospects for the true cost accounting of food systems

Baker, L., Castilleja, G., De Groot Ruiz, A. et al. (2020) ‘Prospects for the true cost accounting of food systems’, Nat Food, 1, pp. 765–767 Available at:

Methodologies for true cost accounting in the food sector

de Adelhart Toorop, R., Yates, J., Watkins, M. et al. (2021) ‘Methodologies for true cost accounting in the food sector’, Nat Food, 2, pp. 655–663. Available at:

The True Cost and True Price of Food

Hendriks, S. et al. (2021) The True Cost and True Price of Food. United Nations Food Systems Summit 2021 Scientific Group. Available at:

Improving Business Decision Making: Valuing the Hidden Costs of Production in the Palm Oil Sector

Raynaud, J., Fobelets, V., Georgieva, A., Joshi, S., Kristanto, L., de Groot Ruiz, A., Bullock, S., Hardwicke, R. (2016). Improving Business Decision Making: Valuing the Hidden Costs of Production in the Palm Oil Sector. A study for The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity for Agriculture and Food (TEEBAgriFood) Program. Available at:

The State of Food and Agriculture 2023 – Revealing the true cost of food to transform agrifood systems

FAO. 2023. The State of Food and Agriculture 2023 – Revealing the true cost of food to transform agrifood systems. Rome. Available at:

Policy interventions related to TVFI

EU Legislative framework for sustainable food systems (FSFS)

The proposal is one of the flagship initiatives of the Farm to Fork Strategy. Available at:

True Price motion passed by Dutch Parliament

A system of true pricing can ensure that climate and environmental damage are considered and makes sustainable choices more attractive. Available at:

Pricing agricultural emissions in Aotearoa New Zealand

To encourage more climate-friendly agriculture, the government of Aotearoa New Zealand is proposing a pricing system based on the farm-level split-gas levy. Available at:

True Cost of Food: Measuring What Matters to Transform the U.S. Food System

A Rockefeller Foundation report that outlines the true cost of food, which includes the impacts on our health, the environment, biodiversity, livelihoods, and much more. Available at:

Green Climate Fund in Ecuador
Integrating the Value of Ecosystems and Biodiversity in Rice Systems in Thailand

Rice production is integral to Thailand’s culture, agricultural landscapes and rural livelihoods, particularly in the area of focus in the Northeast. About 20 percent of the nation’s households, or 4.30 from 21.58 million households, are rice farmers. Available at:

Business cases

Accorn: Rabobank tool

Carbon credit program to supplement smallholder farmers’ incomes. Available at:

Arla Foods Environmental Profit & Loss

Arla Foods Environmental Profit and Loss Accounting 2014: To document the total life cycle environmental impact of their product portfolio, Arla Foods is conducting an Environmental Profit and Loss Account (E P&L). The E P&L expresses Arla Foods’ environmental impacts in monetary units, in addition to the underlying physical units. Available at:

Bakkerij van Vessem: true price of bread

Working with Impact Institute, Bakkerij van Vessem gained more insight into the true costs of their ‘Hollandsch Brood’ and published their first societal impact report, describing their value creation model and the value to society created by the bakery. The result helps the bakery communicate about its value creation to society which helps build engagement with the local community. The bakery then can steer on maximizing its positive and minimizing its negative impact on society to become a truly impact-driven bakery. Available at:

Danone Regenerative Agriculture: Soil Health Program

A Danone North America program aimed at improving soil health, carbon sequestration and crop yields and long-term farm resilience. Available at:

DBS: Palmoil impact assessment

The DBS Impact assessment of lending to the palm oil industry is a first step towards a more comprehensive understanding and measuring of its impacts. It is the result of a collaboration between DBS and Impact Institute to provide insight into the impacts of a bank’s lending activities in the palm oil sector. Available at:

De Aanzet: True Price Supermarket

What is true pricing and how does it look in practice? New Yorker’s article deep dives into this practice through the example of de Aanzet, the first true price supermarket in the world. Available at:

DSM: Boaver®

The methane reduction tool Bovaer is a feed additive that enables farmers to achieve a significant and immediate reduction of the environmental footprint of meat, milk, and dairy products. On average, it reduces enteric methane emissions by 30% from dairy cows and 45% from beef cattle. Available at:

DSM: True Value Analysis of OatWell®

The Royal DSM carried out a pilot study on OatWell. Together with True Price, they quantified the environmental costs and benefits associated with OatWell, by assessing its impact on natural and social capital and assigning an economic value to the environmental and social impacts across the value chain for specific product and market applications. This allowed comparison with economic costs, and encouraged thinking about business models that capture societal value. Available at: (page 10).

Fairtrade: External cost of banana production

Fairtrade commissioned True Price and Trucost to prepare a first-ever study on the external social and environmental costs of banana producers in the key origins of Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador and Peru. The study found that the average external costs of banana production are 45 percent lower for Fairtrade producers than for sector average producers, mainly due to considerably lower external social costs for Fairtrade producers as compared to the sector benchmark. Available at:

Jumbo: Social Impact Scan on mangoes

Over the course of two years, Jumbo performed two Social Impact Scans (SIS), each assessing a different mango production farm in Ivory Coast. The farms are both of medium size, with farm one employing 309 workers and farm two employing 389 workers. The results of these two studies, including strategic suggestions for improvement, have been summarized in a report. Available at:

McCain Smart & Sustainable Farming

One of the pillars is the McCain Regenerative Agriculture Framework, a pathway to progress and guide for our farmers to support their progression toward a more regenerative model. Available at:

Nestlé: Regenerative agriculture

Our Net Zero Roadmap shows that nearly two-thirds of our greenhouse gas emissions come from agriculture, so addressing these emissions is essential. Available at:

Nestlé: Tomato sauce production (creating Shared Value)

Over the last three years, Nestlé has been carrying out natural capital valuations, starting with a global level exercise. Wbcsd wanted to understand the data requirements, the methodological approach, and the business insights that such valuations can provide. For that they measured and quantified impact in monetary terms because it enables us to translate our sustainability work into a common business language. Available at:

Open Soil Index

A tool to measure the sustainability of the soil. It uses existing data sources, including laboratory analyses, satellite data and soil data. Farmers share this data so that we can combine it with information about the region, water quality and soil type. This leads to a number that represents the quality of your soil compared to the most ideal situation. Then you get all kinds of recommendations to get your soil in top condition. Available at:

Penny: German supermarket chain

In a week-long experiment, Penny, a supermarket chain in Germany, raised the prices of products including sausage and cheese to reflect the true cost of these food on health and the environment. Available at:

Rabobank: De Biodiversity Monitor

A growing number of agricultural businesses have come to recognise nature and the environment as a value-added resource that can help them to improve their business operations. Which is why Rabobank has established this method for biodiversity protection in agriculture. Available at:

Rabobank Sustainable Funding

Impact Loans, Sustainability Linked Loans and Green Bonds. Unique to the framework is the use of sub-frameworks, offering investors more guidance and clarity on their sustainable investments upfront. Available at:

Rabo Carbon Bank

An initiative to accelerate the sustainability transformation in agriculture. Rabo Carbon Bank supports farmers in their transition to regenerative practices and offers solutions to corporate clients to reach their climate targets. Available at:

Rockefeller’s School Meal program with WFP

The Rockefeller Foundation and WFP launch initiative to strengthen school meals for millions of children in Benin, Ghana, Honduras, and India. The two-and-a-half-year initiative focuses on including fortified foods in school meals as well as advocating for more nutritious food throughout the programmes. Available at:

RVO: True cost Analysis of Bananas (ongoing project)

Bananas are the most sold product in European supermarkets. The value chain is completely price-driven and the competition between supermarkets to offer the cheapest banana has a devastating effect on production conditions. To tackle these issues adequately it is necessary to take another step and internalize all social and environmental costs in the price that consumers eventually pay. Through the True Price assessment tool producers will know the true cost for their bananas being produced taking the main CSR risks for banana cultivation into account. The project will establish a closed supply chain of producers, exporters, importers and resellers. Available at:

Varda: Global Field ID

Syngenta Group and Yara adopt Varda’s Global Field ID to create a more sustainable food chain. Global agriculture giants teamed up with Varda, the agtech ‘Global Field ID’ innovator, to reduce data fragmentation across the food supply chain. Available at:

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