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Goal 12: Responsible consumption, production

Goal 12: Responsible consumption, production

Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

Achieving economic growth and sustainable development requires that we urgently reduce our ecological footprint by changing the way we produce and consume goods and resources. Agriculture is the biggest user of water worldwide, and irrigation now claims close to 70 percent of all freshwater appropriated for human use.

The efficient management of our shared natural resources, and the way we dispose of toxic waste and pollutants, are important targets to achieve this goal. Encouraging industries, businesses and consumers to recycle and reduce waste is equally important, as is supporting developing countries to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption by 2030.

A large share of the world population is still consuming far too little to meet even their basic needs. Halving per capita global food waste at the retailer and consumer levels is also important for creating more efficient production and supply chains. This can help with food security and shift us towards a more resource efficient economy.

Responsible production and consumption is one of 17 Global Goals that make up the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. An integrated approach is crucial for progress across the multiple goals.

Learn more about the targets for Goal 12.

  • Implement the 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production, all countries taking action, with developed countries taking the lead, taking into account the development and capabilities of developing countries
  • By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources
  • By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses
  • By 2020, achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment
  • By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse
  • Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle
  • Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities
  • By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature
  • Support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption and production
  • Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products
  • Rationalize inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption by removing market distortions, in accordance with national circumstances, including by restructuring taxation and phasing out those harmful subsidies, where they exist, to reflect their environmental impacts, taking fully into account the specific needs and conditions of developing countries and minimizing the possible adverse impacts on their development in a manner that protects the poor and the affected communities

The SDG Fund response

The SDG Fund is collaborating with partners, including from the private sector, to promote more responsible consumption and outsourcing practices, with a particular focus on ensuring that local farmers can obtain a fairer share of the value generated across the value chain.

For example,

  • The SDG Fund is working with the UNDP Goodwill Ambassadors, the Roca Brothers chefs, who are leading a conversation on how chefs can make a difference in reaching the Sustainable Development Goals. At the UN ECOSOC Chamber they gathered with key representatives of the food, nutrition, and development world to discuss how the food industry can contribute to achieve the SDGs and make food accessible for everyone everywhere. They are already working on the ground in some specific projects, including in Nigeria.
  • In Peru, the SDG Fund is contributing to establish an inclusive value chain in the production of quinoa and other Andean grains, so that the increased demand in the international market can convert into economic and social improvements of currently vulnerable producers.
  • In Fiji, the SDG Fund is promoting organic agriculture, a production system that sustains the health of soils, ecosystems and people. Organic agriculture combines tradition, innovation and science to benefit the shared environment and promote fair relationships and a good quality of life for all involved. The programme is working with the tourism industry to ensure that organic production satisfies a growing demand in the industry.
  • In Bolivia, the SDG Fund joint programme is supporting four municipalities to establish sustainable agricultural production systems which will increase the incomes of the poorest families and improve the nutritional state of boys, girls and mothers.

SDG Fund’s programmes contributing to SDG 12


Strengthening local food systems and capacity building aimed at improving the production and access to safe food for families

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Economic inclusion and sustainable development of Andean grain producers in Ayacucho and Puno

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Youth in organic agriculture in Fiji

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