ERA-NET on sustainable food production and consumption

    Project Details


    Main research question/goal
    The SUSFOOD ERA-NET reinforces scientific collaboration between EU Member States and associated states to maximize the research contribution to develop more sustainable food systems. SUSFOOD includes the entire food supply chain, but focuses on food chain sustainability beyond the farm gate. This project covers processing, packaging, transport, retailing, food services, storage and consumer activities. The multi-disciplinary approach ranges from biology to food engineering to social sciences. The socio-economic goals are to increase food production sustainability while reducing waste and limiting environmental damages, to improve quality of life, to motivate consumers to make more sustainable choices, and to improve competitiveness and economic growth in the European food industry, especially SMEs.  

    Research approach
    The consortium’s existing framework identifies concrete actions and has a three-pronged strategy: first, an overview of existing research using an open web based archive, a so-called Meta Knowledge Base, coordinated by ILVO. Current research is analyzed to form synergies and identify gaps and overlaps in European research. This database forms the basis for formulating future research needs. Second, based on identified medium to long-term needs, a strategic research agenda describes the key research priorities and establishes a joint agenda for European food research. This forms the foundation for transnational calls. Third, two transnational calls for research proposals are launched (February 2013 and January 2014) while the feasibility of joint activities in some areas relevant to the project is also demonstrated.

    The SUSFOOD consortium gathers research programme managers nationally and regionally. The impact of these meetings is magnified by the participation of other research stakeholders, including the academic community, technology transfer bodies, etc. SUSFOOD stimulates and supports programme coordination and joint activities and thus helps to develop the common knowledge base necessary for coherent policy development. A very strong and efficient strategy and policy for dissemination and stakeholder interactions is implemented with complete and efficient tailored information exchange through a website, intranet platform, leaflets, flyers, posters, newsletters, workshops, meetings, conferences, publications, etc. The related European scientific community is encouraged to participate actively. The project will be widely publicized to the stakeholders and the general public.
    Effective start/end date1/12/1130/11/14