Workers and smallholders should be able to afford a decent standard of living for themselves and their families

We have learned that the best way to address gaps between current wages and living wages is through a supply chain approach, where all players make efforts towards closing such gaps. From one side, suppliers, along with workers, whose voice on the matter is key, and from the other side, buyers. IDH supports supply chain projects where both buyers and suppliers are working on several of the activities mentioned below, and where workers’ voices are ensured. We will keep learning on best strategies to close the living wage gap and share accordingly.

Suppliers & Workers

  • Improve quality & productivity linked to increased wages
  • Strengthen social dialogue and wage setting mechanisms
  • Increase workers in-kind benefits
  • Enhance workers’ skills
  • Improve health & safety
  • Improve human resource management


  • Monitor & Evaluate wage situations
  • Commit & Set reasonable targets
  • Invest on suppliers’ activities
  • Adopt sustainable procurement and trading practices: long term, transparent & stable contracts; pricing/using SPK; premiums.
  • Market & Brand efforts

IDH work on closing living wage gaps

IDH has worked with many partners to improve working conditions and close living wage gaps in several supply chains. We drive progress towards living wages by convening sectoral coalitions, taking action and continuously incorporating lessons learned. We also advise companies on how to achieve living wages in their own supply chains. Click below to find out more about our experience in three sectors:

Other IDH work on Living Wage

Other IDH work on Living Income

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    Taking steps towards a living income for coffee producers


International uniform approach

As part of the Roadmap on Living Wages, IDH wants to recommend trustworthy ways of verifying calculations of living wage gaps. For those interest in independent verification, IDH is currently developing a process for recognizing organizations that can help verify calculations on remuneration and living wage gaps through the appropriate use of the Salary Matrix.

Independent verification carried out by IDH-recognized organizations can support dialogue between producers, workers’ organizations and buyers for finding solutions to address potential differences between current remuneration and living wages. This process will be made available on this webpage during the second half of 2020

IDH Roadmap on Living Wages

Key learnings & Insights

To overcome this century's challenges, we need structural change that puts living wage and living income at the core.

How can we support you?

IDH supports companies identifying recommended living wage and gaps, as well as support to undertake projects to reduce the identified gap.

Click here for more information about the approach we take


Title Type Year
Joint Declaration living wage and living income (governments of the Netherlands and Germany) Other publications 2021
Response to joint declaration regarding Living Wage and Living Income Other publications 2021
IDH Food Crops and Ingredients brochure (2021) Brochure 2021
Matriz Salarial de IDH V.2 Toolkit and guide 2020
Webinar Living Wage Report Report 2020

Contact us to learn more

Living Wage and Living Income Strategy Leads