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Livelihoods Funds

Tackling rural poverty, environmental degradation and climate change by helping smallholder farmers sustainably improve their livelihoods, through investment funds.

The Livelihoods funds

It all began in Senegal in 2009, when Danone teamed up with local NGO Oceanium and Voyageurs du Monde to roll out one of the biggest mangrove reforestation projects in the world. This led to the planting of 80 million mangroves, positively impacting 100,000 people.

To improve the living conditions of even more inhabitants through large-scale projects, Danone invited nine other companies to join forces, thus creating the Livelihoods Carbon Fund with Schneider Electric, Crédit Agricole S.A., Michelin, Hermès, SAP, CDC Climat, La Poste, Firmenich and Voyageurs du Monde. The fund has invested more than €40 million to finance mangrove plantation, agroforestry and rural energy programs.

The Livelihoods Fund is currently developing projects in Africa, Asia and Latin America. 


"A major challenge for rural communities and the private sector is to increase productivity while preserving ever scarcer natural resources more effectively.” Bernard Giraud, President of Livelihoods Venture.

Our impact


million trees planted


million beneficiaries


million metric tons of CO2 sequestrated or avoided over 20 years

On the strength of the Fund's success, in 2015 a second investment fund was launched, the Livelihoods   Fund for Family Farming (L3F), by Danone, Mars Inc., Firmenich and Veolia. This fund will invest €120 million in projects that will positively impact the lives of 2 million people, by converting 200,000 small farms to sustainable agriculture methods.

The Livelihoods Funds support the efforts of underprivileged rural communities in developing countries to restore their ecosystems. When villages and small farmers can access sustainable farming practices and simple, and expensive technologies, they can restore their soils, thus boosting their food security and increasing their incomes. Livelihoods Fund projects are co-constructed with local communities, NGOs and players in the public and private sectors. They are set up for the long-term (10 to 20 years) in order to give local communities time to make the projects their own and ensure that the benefits are long-lasting. 


The Livelihoods Funds offer their investors an innovative investment model with returns based on results to guarantee the maximum effectiveness of projects. The first fund draws on the carbon economy to generate positive consequences for rural communities, while enabling companies to compensate part of the emissions they are unable to reduce. The aim of the L3F Fund is to create a win-win relationship between small farmers and companies, thus establishing sustainable supply chains.


Livelihoods has nine active projects around the world and new projects are currently being implemented in Africa, Asia and Latin America.


The Livelihoods funds

Discover our projects