Fresh fruit group Dole Asia Holdings, headquartered in Singapore, has launched a US$2m fund centred on nutrition solutions and sustainability.

The Sunshine for All Fund “will support global strategic partnerships and innovation in the crucial areas of sustainability, food access and waste,” Dole said in a statement. “By partnering with talented innovators, promising start-ups and progressive partners, the fund will address these gaps of affordability and waste, as well accessibility and acceptability.”

Dole’s new initiative builds on The Dole Promise introduced last year centred on nutrition, sustainability and the creation of shared value, with a key objective to provide sustainable nutrition for one billion people by 2025 and to cut “processed sugar” in its products by the same target date. It also aims to use “zero fossil-based plastic packaging” by 2025 and to achieve zero carbon emissions by 2030.

“Nearly one-quarter of the world’s population is experiencing moderate or severe food insecurity, and globally, one-third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted,” Dole said.

Dole’s Sunshine for All Fund is being driven by Dole Asia Holdings and its subsidiaries, Dole Packaged Foods and Dole Asia Fresh Produce.

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Pier Luigi Sigismondi, the president of Dole Packaged Foods Worldwide, said: "We believe purpose must permeate every part of the company to address these global challenges, from our business model and the products we make, to our work with partners, what we lobby for, and how we strive for a more equal world.

"Raising awareness of the global issues we face, and investing in the best thinking through this fund, is our way of ensuring not only that our purpose is fulfilled, but that we are driving tangible solutions and real systemic change - today."