Transforming the EU Agri-Food Sector

Joint declaration to transform the agri-food sector in Europe into a more competitive, sustainable and trusted sector, securing the production of safe, nutritious food that every consumer loves.


The European Technology Platform ‘Food for Life’, FoodDrinkEurope, the European Federation of Food Science and Technology (EFFoST), EIT Food, Food Nexus and FOODforce have issued a declaration to transform the agri-food sector in Europe into a more competitive, sustainable and trusted sector, securing the production of safe, nutritious food that every consumer loves.


These organisations, key stakeholders in the agri-food sector representing farmers, food producers, academia and other actors in the food industry, share a common vision to create a broad, pan-European movement with the citizen at its heart, connecting and leveraging all actors and initiatives underway.


The signatories of the declaration call on the European Commission and Member States to support this strategy through a comprehensive program in FP9, targeting technological solutions in food security, sustainable farming, food safety and healthy nutrition.


Please click the file below to download this declaration.


Adobe Acrobat Document 243.9 KB

New H2020 project: SMARTCHAIN  "Towards Innovation - driven and smart solutions in short food supply chains"

On the 1st of September, the new H2020 project SMARTCHAIN: "Towards Innovation - driven and smart solutions in short food supply chains" will be officially launched. The kick off meeting will take place on the 17th and 18th of October at the University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany. 

SMARTCHAIN is an ambitious, 3 year project with 43 partners from 11 European countries including key stakeholders from the domain of short food supply chain as actors in the project. The central objective is to foster and accelerate the shift towards collaborative short food supply chains and, through concrete actions and recommendations, to introduce new robust business models and innovative practical solutions that enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of the European agri-food system.


Using bottom-up, demand-driven research, the SMARTCHAIN consortium i) will perform a multi-perspective analysis of 18 case studies of short food supply chains in terms of technological, regulatory, social, economic and environmental factors, ii) will assess the linkages and interactions among all stakeholders involved in short food supply chains and iii) will identify the key parameters that influence sustainable food production and rural development among different regions in Europe.

The project aims to establish 9 national communities of short food supply chains (Innovation and Collaboration Hubs) in different partner countries (France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland) and a virtual innovation hub in order to facilitate stakeholder engagement, bringing farmers and consumers together in a trust-enhancing environment enabling them to generate demand driven-innovations.


Combination of scientific and practical knowledge and the use of innovation workshops will enable the development of practical innovative solutions as well as the promotion of a framework for different forms of collaborative short food supply chains in urban and rural areas. SMARTCHAIN will generate concrete actions for knowledge transfer, through the organisation of multi-stakeholder workshops and training activities for farmers and short food supply chain entrepreneurs.


More detailed information


Project Duration: 09/2018 - 08/2021

Coordinator: University of Hohenheim

Participating countries: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland


SUSFOOD2 ERA-NET BIOCARB-4-FOOD Kick off meeting (7 September, 2018, IATA-CSIC, Valencia, Spain)

The European project BIOCARB-4-FOOD "Extraction and characterization of BIOactives and CARBohydrates from seaweeds and seagrasses FOR FOOD-related applications" will officially start the 1st of September 2018. The kick off meeting will take place on the 7th of September in Valencia, Spain. 


BIOCARB-4-FOOD proposes to explore, in close collaboration with industry, novel, environmentally friendly and efficient extraction techniques (ultrasound, microwave, enzymes and their combinations), combined with the exploitation of the remaining biomass, rich in bioactive compounds, to sequentially obtain novel carbohydrate-based extracts and fibers (nanocellulose) from seaweeds and seagrasses. This SUSFOOD2 project will characterize structure, technological properties, toxicity and bioactivity of the fractions obtained from the various extraction technologies and a life cycle assessment (LCA) will also be conducted for proving the sustainability of the procedures.


The project is expected to contribute to improved process efficiency, development of ingredients with high added value from already commercialized seaweed species and from under-exploited sources (seagrasses) which can positively impact in the competitiveness of seaweed, food and non-food companies at EU scale by a better valorization of raw materials.


Project Duration: 09/2018 - 08/2021

Coordinator: IATA-CSIC (Spain)

Partners: Nofima AS (Norway), Teagasc (Ireland), University of Hohenheim (Germany) and RISE Research Institutes of Sweden (Sweden)


FOODforce in the 5th International ISEKI_Food Conference 2018 (3-5 July, 2018, University of Hohenheim, Germany)

In the frame of the 5th International ISEKI-Food Conference 2018 at the University of Hohenheim, Peter Jongebloed, as a keynote speaker representing FOODforce, gave a presentation on ‘How to implement a FOOD system approach in Horizon Europe’?


Food has a twin identity: it has an important role in the unprecedented global challenges we face. But, on the other hand, it can be a central component of the solutions for these global challenges and thus also meeting the UN’s Sustainability Development Goals. A well-established Food System Approach is essential to come up with the game changing solutions needed.


However, the Food System involves complex interactions among the different actors in the different parts of the value chain and value net. We see that actors of the value net often work in do not work together, do not meet each other, thus act as independent silos. As such, the role of consumers and citizens as consumers are strongly undervalued. This makes the impetus to encourage stronger involvement of European citizens an even bigger challenge.


A transition from the current unsustainable food system to a healthy, circular and resource-efficient paradigm is essential. Such transitions will be hugely complex, since the multiple patterns of food production and consumption are closely interconnected and changing one aspect can easily have major unintended consequences. Therefore substantial actions are needed which must be driven both by science as well as the values and engagement of European citizens’.


FOODforce has identified and synthesised three major gaps “The Grand Gaps” in the complexity of food systems. These gaps can be filled with a set of approaches and solutions, to make the transition happen. Based on that, a FOODforce Position Paper "Food System Approach" will be available soon.


More info on the 5th ISEKI_Food Conference 2018 at

New Master Programme in Food Sciences

New Master Programme in Food Sciences for Innovation and Authenticity at the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano in South Tyrol/Italy

This two-year master provides you with sound knowledge of current and future 

challenges in food sciences, combining innovation and authenticity, and
offering you the opportunity to interact closely with the food industry. The
programme is *a joint initiative with the Universities of Parma and Udine*,
known worldwide for their excellence in higher education in the field of food

The course aims at training professionals who are able to work confidently in
areas of food sciences, such as technology, engineering, microbiology,
chemistry and sustainability.

Ater the first year, you can choose among *five different profiles*:

 * Applied Engineering and Genetics;
 * Food Quality and Management;
 * Nutrition Sciences;
 * Food Chemistry;
 * Food Packaging.

During their master students have the opportunity *to do an exchange
programme with the University College Cork, Ireland and the Technical
University of Munich*, Germany, two global leaders in food sciences.

The application deadline is 18 July 2018 

 More Info