Grow - Knowledge Hub | Circle Economy Foundation

Grow countries globally account for 55% of all raw material extraction and 52% of the material footprint, while housing around 37% of the global population.

These are larger Southeast Asian countries and countries in Latin America and Northern Africa, as well as those with an economy in transition in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia.

Examples include :

  • China
  • Indonesia
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Vietnam
  • Myanmar
  • Egypt, …

Large contribution to the overshoot of planetary boundaries—largely due to the consumptions of local materials in higher- income (Shift) countries: these countries contribute 50% of climate change, 62% of nitrogen, 60% of phosphorus, 53% of freshwater use and 42% of land use change.

To find out what country profile your country belongs to, explore this interactive story and search for your country on the final map.

Consists of:

👕📱 Consumer goods

Manufactured goods, such as vehicles, textiles, appliances and equipment and their associated production processes are big employers but: production processes often rely on fossil fuels and currently drive one-third of the overshoot on the climate change planetary boundary due to its GHG production, material- and energy-intensive industrial activities are linked to deforestation and drive 15% on both the land use and freshwater planetary boundaries, manufacturing goods results in substantial amounts of hazardous industrial waste and leaks chemicals into the environment. Here, circular solutions must tackle the full value chain, but material demand must also shrink: this will necessitate a societal shift to favouring sufficiency over excess and reducing consumption to sustainable levels. Our four key solutions for manufactured goods are: Mainstream industrial symbiosis and efficiency : Achieve process improvements, scrap diversion and reduction in yield losses through greater industrial symbiosis and efficiency. Foster tighter collaboration within and between industries to deliver powerful material and emissions savings. Extend the lifetime of machinery, equipment, and goods: Maximise the lifetime of goods that serve our daily needs to bring a number of environmental benefits. Buy what's needed: Reduce the number of purchases of common electronic goods, appliances, and other equipment to sufficiency levels. Eschew fast fashion in favour of sustainable textiles: Drastically reduce new clothing purchases. All used clothing should go on to be repaired, reused or, if needed, recycled appropriately. Prioritise natural and local textile manufacturing, as well as higher-quality and more durable garments.

🍏 Food Systems

The food system nourishes populations and employs 50% of the global workforce, but: it currently drives a quarter of the overshoot on the climate change planetary boundary due to its greenhouse gas (GHG) production, animal farming alone uses over one-quarter of all land, equivalent to the size of the Americas, nearly a quarter of freshwater resources are lost due to rampant food waste, and it is the single largest driver of biodiversity loss. A circular food system must address the whole value chain, from production to consumption to waste management. The four key solutions for the food system are: Put healthier, satiating foods first: Prioritise satiating and healthy foods with a lower environmental impact—ideally shifting calories from meat, fish, and dairy towards cereals, fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Go local, seasonal, and organic: Prioritise the production and consumption of local, seasonal, and organic produce (sometimes in combination with GMO to reduce pests and disease loss on crops), which can lead to a significantly reduced need for chemical inputs, fuels, and processing services that contribute to environmental impacts. Mainstream regenerative agriculture: Scale up agricultural practices that regenerate ecosystems, recirculate nutrients and sequester carbon by design. End avoidable food waste: Minimise food loss and valorise waste following the food waste hierarchy along the supply chain and at the consumer level through better management of transport and storage, more refrigeration and smart planning, and technology at the consumer and food service levels.

Relevant case studies and reports

Sort by:

Most relevant


Filter by:

Approved by curator

Click to learn more about this filter

This section allows you to filter for curated case studies. Curated case studies have been reviewed and approved by knowledgeable individuals in the circular economy to ensure content quality.

Loading filter ...
Loading filter ...
Loading filter ...
Loading filter ...