Side by side
for people and planet

For 20 years, WWF and IKEA have been working side by side on forests, cotton, water and climate. Through our efforts to protect landscapes, enhance biodiversity, and empower local communities, we aim to inspire your organisation to do the same – for a One planet future.

Side by side

Why WWF and IKEA?

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WWF and IKEA have a shared interest in seeing regions around the planet develop and prosper. The combined commitment, expertise and networks of our two organisations give us the unique ability to find implementable solutions, influence business practices, and enable change.

The level of biodiversity in the natural world is being lost at an alarming rate. This risks setting off a chain reaction that can change our environment, threaten the livelihood of billions of people, and make the planet less hospitable.

Since 2002 WWF and IKEA have been working side by side to support a transition towards more sustainable business practices across the board. With focus on biodiversity, landscape and innovative approaches we have:

  • Launched projects to protect and improve management of forests and reduce illegal logging.
  • Worked to improve livelihoods in cotton farming and to reduce water and pesticide use.
  • Worked with freshwater projects in finding shared solutions within water use for a more sustainable textile industry.
  • Worked on establishing a global framework for a climate positive definition and to develop tools for setting Science Based Targets for forests, land and agriculture.
  • Collaborated with other companies and networks to shape progressive regulations and stimulate sector-wide innovation.

Side by side

Why tell our story?

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Because we believe that no single organisation can do it alone. We would like to demonstrate the opportunities a partnership between an NGO and a business can bring, inspiring others to follow. Through cooperation and common goals every government, NGO, business or other organisation can accelerate actions towards a net-zero and one planet future.

Societies, local communities and companies all have strong reasons for ensuring that the natural resources and ecosystems that underpin their very existence are used sustainably, without compromising biodiversity.

The WWF and IKEA partnership centers around protecting natural ecosystems, enhancing biodiversity, and creating more sustainable business practices. It also involves minimising risk, empowering smallholders, and improving lives in farming and forest communities.

We now know from experience that working side by side – bringing together stakeholders with different perspectives – is a fruitful way forward.

Side by side

Collaboration is key

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There is no quick fix, but collaboration and exchange of ideas is a step in the right direction. By truly listening and understanding the other side, and by taking a look at our respective dilemmas as seen from each other’s perspectives, we have been able to align our interests and establish working methods towards a common goal.

Complex solutions require teamwork
Laying the ground for more sustainable business practices doesn’t just entail the environment; there are also social, cultural and political dimensions to consider. It takes articulated goals, strategies and codes of ethics that also built on sustainability.

Every stakeholder matters
We have not only been working side by side with each other, but also with local parties on the ground. With our stories portraying “everyday changemakers” from i.e Vietnam, Romania, Borneo, Pakistan and the Caucasus we want to stress the importance of involving local stakeholders.

Challenging each other bears fruit
Sometimes it has been hard going – but it has also been rewarding. We do not always agree, but we learn and develop from our disagreements.

Side by side

Stories from changemakers on the ground

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In-the-field collaboration for local empowerment and more sustainable production


Through in-the-field collaboration we are testing innovative methods for protecting entire landscapes around cotton farms. By expanding the scope based on our learnings and laying the foundation for more sustainable production, we are enabling better access to finance, better access to markets, and a more stable livelihood for cotton farmers. At the same time we are improving supply chains and increasing the critical mass, accessibility, and quality of raw materials.


For over 20 years WWF and IKEA have been working side by side as partners – doing together what would be impossible to do alone.

Watch this video to get a glimpse of our longstanding work together.

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Side by side

Biodiversity loss is risky business

The work starts with smallholders, but it’s all about the bigger picture.
Today global producers must safeguard that their supply chains are not contributing to biodiversity loss – or risk the consumer having some serious doubts about becoming a customer.

The long-term risks are even greater

Disruption of supply chains and increased costs due to loss of biodiversity.

Additional costs due to governmental biodiversity regulations.

And there are obvious business opportunities

Profitable new markets, products, services, and business models.

Improve value proposition and strengthen brand value.

Access to investor capital and potential operational synergies.

It’s a win-win way forward

Lots of hard work remains, but working side by side we are making a difference on a grassroots level. Ultimately the effects, like ripples on the water, will be felt everywhere.

Side by side

We are driving change

The way we work:

  • A landscape approach
  • Enhancing local markets
  • Local empowerment
  • In-the-field collaboration
  • Local training
  • Certifications e.g., Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)

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Reaching out

No one organisation can do it alone (and after 20 years we can assure you that neither WWF nor IKEA can do it alone). Necessary changes can only come about when all stakeholders get involved.

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We agree on what efforts to invest in, and we carry out the actions together. We discuss new ideas, new concepts, focus areas, hotspots and interventions. Everything starts with engagement.

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Common targets

Bringing about a process of change can be a question of using practical, down-to-earth methods. Clearly formulated common targets is one of them: Identify and specify your top three or five impact goals – as well as short term targets.

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Hard work

There have been learnings, challenges, and issues. There will be more – and we will find out ways to tackle them, too. We will adapt and we will improve our methods and ourselves.

A lot of hard work remainsbut working side by side with a partner with different skills and experiences is a source of strength, energy and inspiration.

In an increasingly resource challenged and deglobalised world, it is more important than ever to work side by side. Forests are facing more external threats and we must respond to these dilemmas by working differently and engaging with wider expertise. We shall continue to use our 20 years of experience as a great asset to lead the next phase of solutions.

– MIKHAIL TARASOV, Global Forestry Manager, IKEA

Our experience: Consult other stakeholders, listen to their expertise. Then set internal targets. This is not hard, implementation is.

– GRACE HUBER, Wood Supply & Forestry Communication, IKEA

We need to have a holistic approach on supply chains. There are many stakeholders who exist in these areas; people, farmers, companies and authorities. There needs to be an interplay between these parties. Creating common views and agreements for sustainable land use, that’s what it’s about.

– OLLE FORSHED, Program Manager and Expert Rainforests, WWF

We need to keep challenging our teams, because the sector is challenging us. What was acceptable yesterday probably is not acceptable today, and what is acceptable today is not going to be relevant tomorrow.

– ARVIND REWAL, Cotton Development Manager, IKEA

Side by side

For people and planet