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EU-international cooperation in research & innovation to transform agri-food systems
December 6 @ 10:00 am - 1:30 pm UTC+0
Investing in research and innovation (R&I) that benefits developing country farmers is key to the EU’s response to global challenges that affect the EU. This high-level event supported by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation aims to show why more research funding is needed for agricultural R&D in both Europe and Africa and to provide input for the Horizon Europe Work Programme 2025-27 (Cluster 6 and Soil Mission). Agroecological practices should be high on the agenda as they represent one key path to improving livelihoods, soil health, and climate adaptation.
In the first part of the event, after a welcome note from Michael Niejahr, Acting Deputy Director-General at DG AGRI, European Commission, different agroecological R&I cooperation projects from Europe and the Mediterranean-African region will share key messages and lessons learned:
The Horizon 2020 project UPSCALE coordinated by the Justus Liebig University Giessen is about realising the transformative potential of push-pull technology in the sub-Saharan region of East Africa by fostering the design, adaptation and adoption of strategies for integrated agro-ecological management.
The Horizon Europe project IntercropVALUES aims to exploit the benefits of intercropping to design and manage productive, diversified, resilient, profitable, environmentally friendly cropping systems acceptable to farmers and actors in the agri-food chain. As a multi-disciplinary and multi-actor project, it brings together scientists and local actors representing the food value chain. It includes 27 participants from 15 countries (3 continents) from a wide diversity of organisations and stakeholders, and case studies also outside of Europe, e.g. in Mozambique and La Reunion.
The second part, a high-level panel debate on the policy framework and priorities for R&I cooperation in agriculture, especially Africa-EU cooperation, will bring together representatives from the European Commission, the Africa-EU Partnership and PRIMA, the Partnership for R&I in the Mediterranean Area, as well as from TP Organics. During this debate, priorities for EU R&I investments will be discussed to meet the objectives of these partnerships and to enable the EU to respond to global challenges of climate change and long-term food security (including agricultural productivity) that are affecting both Africa and the EU.
The event will take place in the framework of the Food 2030 Conference on 4-5 December (organised by DG RTD, European Commission) and the EU Agri-Food Days from 6-8 December 2023 (organised by DG AGRI, European Commission). A light organic networking lunch will be served following the event.