The Next Billion

Supporting Better Agriculture

In the last 50 years, agricultural practices have changed dramatically due in part to the effects of population growth, technological advancements, and globalization. Looking ahead, world population is expected to grow from its current level of 7.3 billion to nearly 8.5 billion by 2030. In 2015, 795 million people were estimated to be chronically undernourished. Feeding an additional billion people will place demands on the agricultural industry, accelerating the need for additional investment in food safety, sustainable farming practices, and product innovation.

Food Safety

Demographic changes such as a rising middle class in emerging markets have fueled demand for higher-quality food items, including milk, meat, and seafood. In the last eight years, KKR has made multiple investments in Chinese agricultural companies that focus on food safety and access.

Food Distribution

Food producers are not the only ones that need to optimize their business for safer and more sustainable practices. Food distributors such as our portfolio company US Foods face similar challenges and opportunities.

In 2015, US Foods became the first nationwide foodservice distributor in the United States to earn Marine Stewardship Council certification for its distribution centers' chain of custody. US Foods is also committed to other ESG-related initiatives and participates in KKR’s GreenSolutions Platform.

Economic Development

From the types of employees hired to the benefits provided, responsible labor practices can helpcreate a more dependable and healthier workforce. Two of our portfolio companies, Santanol and Afriflora, have focused on implementing responsible labor practices and offer value-add programs for employees.

Img Sandalwood

Santanol’s sustainable sandalwood plantation in Western Australia recently launched its first recruitment effort targeting the local Aboriginal community with an emphasis on creating a positive integration experience, putting significant resources toward developing and retaining these individuals.

Agricultural Innovation

To meet increasing food demands while using fewer natural resources, food producers must determine how to maintain or, in many cases, increase their yields while using less land and less water amid unpredictable climatic conditions. Although many of our investments in agricultural companies use innovative technologies, we believe Sundrop Farms is the epitome of innovation through its core business.

Looking Ahead

By focusing on food safety and security, land use, labor practices, or food distribution, companies and investors who promote innovation and efficiency will play a critical role in meeting future challenges and creating a better agricultural system.

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Case Study

Yuehai Feed Group: Investing in Aquatic Feed and Nutrition Solutions >

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Case Study

US Foods: Focusing on Food Quality and Safety >

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Case Study

Sundrop Farms: Expanding Suitable Farming Locations >

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