Rise Up for Biodiversity
4th April 2021
Our incredible planet supports a rich, interconnected web of life, a huge variety of animals, plants, fungi and bacteria. This biodiversity makes nature productive, resilient and adaptable.
And we are part of, and dependent on, nature’s beautiful biodiversity.
So many of us turned to nature during the lockdown. We explored our local green spaces for physical exercise and mental well-being. We cultivated our own patches of flowers and veggies, listened to the birdsong and buzzing bees and had encounters with mammals like the wily city foxes.
For those who weren’t able to connect with the natural world, the sense of loss was palpable.
Unfortunately nature is declining at unprecedented rates.
One million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction, many within decades, due to habitat loss, direct exploitation, climate change and pollution.
This decline is undermining nature’s productivity, resilience and adaptability, putting at risk our economies and well-being. The devastating impacts of COVID-19, due to our intrusion and exploitation of the natural world, should be a stark warning about the direction we’re heading.
The loss of biodiversity impacts human well-being as we destroy the foundations of our economies, livelihoods, food security, health and quality of life worldwide.
Food production is the main reason we are losing biodiversity.
We are destroying and polluting important ecosystems and habitats, including forests, mangroves and grasslands, for agriculture. More than a third of the world’s land surface and 75% of freshwater resources are now used for crop or livestock production.
Modern agricultural methods include growing monocultures of wheat, barley and other grains, or single species of fruit or vegetable crops. This can cause irreversible ecological damage by reducing nutrients and allowing pests (and making farming dependent on chemical fertilisers and pesticides).
Many ecosystems are at imminent risk of tipping points and biodiversity loss will continue to accelerate, unless we change the way we produce food.
We can change this.
Through transformative change and conservation efforts to restore the diversity of life, we can protect nature and the services it provides us including fresh water, pollination, soil fertility, food and medicine.
The recent Dasgupta Review set out the importance of action and what that action looks like. It is an important read - grab a beer and immerse yourself.
We need to protect and make space for nature, and ensure that we farm in a nature-friendly way that supports biodiversity. We also need to change our diets to eat less meat and dairy.
And one of the most important changes we can make is to stop wasting food. We are destroying the natural world to produce food that is never eaten, with ⅓ of all food wasted globally.
We're collaborating with Oddbox and Flawsome!
Toast’s mission to reduce food waste aligns with the UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 12.3) to halve food waste by 2030.
For Earth Day, we’ve partnered with anti-food waste brands Flawsome! And Oddbox to launch a limited edition beer brewed with surplus fresh bread, British wheat, malt and oats, and surplus, wonky mangos.
Oddbox is a community powered weekly rescue mission to save delicious, fresh fruit and veg which is deemed ‘too big’, ‘too ugly’, the ‘wrong’ colour, or ‘not needed’ from going to waste. It delivers its boxes directly from the growers to people’s doorsteps across London and the South East.
Flawsome! saves imperfect and surplus fruit by transforming it into perfectly crafted cold-pressed juices. Through strong relationships with farmers, Flawsome! set up a Fairer to Farmers programme by paying fairly for their products and they invest approx 2% of their sales in environmental causes and charities around the world.
Our Mango IPA collaboration is a juicy India Pale Ale with a smooth mouthfeel, lightly spiced to lift the sweetness of the mangos and oats. Available now in our online shop.
In the lead up to the pivotal climate change negotiations at COP26, we’re releasing a series of limited edition beers with fellow B Corps. Each beer highlights an element of the ecological crisis, and the change needed to the food system to meet the ambitious goals set in the Paris Agreement to limit warming to 1.5oC.
By supporting businesses that operate for the benefit of people and the planet, particularly certified B Corps such as Toast and Oddbox, you can help to change the food system, and change the world.
Missed our Beer Masterclass with Oddbox and Flawsome? Catch up on YouTube .
Watch: A Life On Our Planet (David Attenborough), Call of Life (Species Alliance), Protect them. Protect Us (Born Free Foundation)
Listen: International Dawn Chorus Day on 2nd May (RSPB)
Read: The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History (Elizabeth Kolbert), Spring cannot be cancelled (David Hockney)
Act: Join the Global Earth Challenge and become a citizen scientist.