BioDiversity Add-on: Promoting biodiversity in conventional agriculture

Biodiversity and agriculture

Biodiversity – the huge variety of life on earth, encompassing animals, plants, bacteria, and fungi – is one of the world’s most precious resources. Protecting biodiversity has become one of the most important challenges facing the agricultural sector and food supply chains.

The BioDiversity add-on

The BioDiversity add-on lays out a set of rules, principles, and criteria, which help producers to demonstrate their biodiversity management practices. Retailers and traders can ask suppliers to undergo a BioDiversity add-on audit in order to fulfill their corporate social responsibility pledges.

The wide range of audit criteria in the BioDiversity add-on includes:

  • The farm’s biodiversity action plan
  • Access to training, knowledge sharing, and farm-specific biodiversity advice
  • Off-farm synergies
  • Areas dedicated to biodiversity
  • Protection and restoration measures
  • Integrated pest management
  • Soil and nutrient management plan
  • Wastewater management and protection of water sources

Supply chain requirements for add-on implementation may vary. In the first year, producers are required to establish a biodiversity action plan detailing measures to be implemented over a given timeframe.

The add-on audit is usually conducted together with the audit for the Integrated Farm Assurance (IFA) standard for crops (v5.2 or v5.4-1-GFS). The audit duration is foreseen to be similar to SPRING. Producers who comply with 100% of the Major Must and critical criteria and at least 75% of the Minor Musts will receive a letter of conformance which is visible in the GLOBALG.A.P. IT systems.

Version 1 of the GLOBALG.A.P. BioDiversity add-on will be launched and made available to the public in April 2022 and will currently only be available for fruit and vegetable producers in the European Economic Area. Certification bodies (CBs) can access the documents for internal training via the GLOBALG.A.P. website from February 2022.

Technical development

The BioDiversity add-on version 1 was created by the GLOBALG.A.P. Standards & Technical team and a multi-stakeholder project team on the initiative of the German retailer Lidl. The project harnessed a wide range of industry perspectives: Sustainable Food Systems GmbH (SFS), the Global Nature Fund, Bioland, suppliers and producers across Europe, and the Nürtingen-Geislingen University.

Version 1 of the BioDiversity add-on has been developed as a prototype and therefore did not go through the normal GLOBALG.A.P. governance processes. In this respect, the development process is similar to that of other GLOBALG.A.P. add-ons, such as GRASP and SPRING, which were originally developed on the initiative of a GLOBALG.A.P. Community Member. A technical update of version 1 will be released by the end of 2022 to align the checklist with IFA v6.

Version 2 of the BioDiversity add-on will be developed in 2023 according to the normal GLOBALG.A.P. governance processes and taking into account the learnings from version 1.

BioDiversity add-on fees

The fees for the BioDiversity add-on are similar to those of other add-ons.

BioDiversity add-on fees for CBs:

CB license fee (scope extension): €500 per year
CB IHT training: €250 per training day per person

BioDiversity add-on annual fees for producers:

Option 1 – €30
Option 2 – €250 per group + €5 per producer group member

What are GLOBALG.A.P. add-ons?

GLOBALG.A.P. add-ons are farm assurance solutions designed to complement GLOBALG.A.P. standards for safe and responsible farming. They are tailored to specific topics and usually audited together with IFA. 




For any general questions please contact the GLOBALG.A.P. Customer Support team:

For any technical questions regarding the implementation of the BioDiversity add-on, please contact the Standards & Technical team: