a.s.r. is going to reward farmers who are committed to sustainable business operations. Farmers who use agricultural land owned by a.s.r. can receive a discount of 5 to 10% on the rent if they manage their land sustainably. In order to make the agricultural sector more sustainable, a.s.r. has for some time been taking steps, together with farmers, to improve soil health and promote biodiversity. With this new step, a.s.r. aims to accelerate the sustainability transition.
In consultation with the agricultural sector, a.s.r. has drawn up practical sustainability guidelines that farmers must meet in order to be eligible for a discount. The elements of soil, biodiversity and the business are central to this. As far as possible, it was sought to link up with existing sustainability certifications, to avoid extra work for farmers.
Dick van den Oever, director of Rural Real Estate at a.s.r. real estate: ‘The pressure to make the agricultural sector more sustainable has increased in recent years. a.s.r. believes that all parties in the agricultural chain are jointly responsible for this transition, not only the farmers themselves. We see that improvements for sustainable farming involve investments by farmers. That’s why a.s.r. wants to meet farmers’ needs by compensating them financially with a discount.
Rewarding farmers falls under the Climate-Smart Agriculture strategy of the ASR Dutch Farmland Fund, the fund that accommodates a.s.r.’s agricultural land. With this strategy, the fund is committed to a sector where fertile land will remain available for future generations of farmers. The fund does this by, among other things, realising a sustainable income with sustainable production, making the agricultural sector climate proof and reducingCO2 where possible.