Knowledged Based Bioeconomy is one of the most successful and fast growing areas in Europe
The European Union performs a Europe 2020 strategy for "Innovating for sustainable growth: A Bioeconomy for Europe". The Europe 2020 Strategy calls for a bioeconomy as a key element for smart and green growth in Europe. Advancements in bioeconomy research and innovation uptake will allow Europe to improve the management of its renewable biological resources and to open new and diversified markets in food and bio-based products. The goals of the strategy contribute significantly to the objectives of the Europe 2020 flagship initiatives "Innovation Union" and "A Resource Efficient Europe".
The Bioeconomy Strategy and its Action Plan aim to pave the way to a more innovative, resource efficient and competitive society that reconciles food security with the sustainable use of renewable resources for industrial purposes, while ensuring environmental protection. They will inform research and innovation agendas in bioeconomy sectors and contribute to a more coherent policy environment, better interrelations between national, EU and global bioeconomy policies and a more engaged public dialogue.
ENSURING FOOD SECURITY
Global population growth by 2050 is estimated to lead to a 70% increase in food demand, which includes a projected twofold increase in world meat consumption. The Bioeconomy Strategy will contribute to a global approach in meeting this challenge by developing the knowledge-base for a sustainable increase in primary production, taking into account all options from cutting-edge science to local and tacit knowledge. It will also encourage changes in production and consumption patterns and the development of healthier and more sustainable diets. The EU food manufacturing sector and households alone waste about 90 million tonnes of food annually or 180 kg per person, not taking into account losses in agriculture and fisheries. The Strategy will support more resource-efficient food supply chains in line with the Roadmap to a Resource Efficient Europe and the Blue Growth Initiative.
MANAGING NATURAL RESOURCES SUSTAINABLY
Agriculture, forestry, fisheries and aquaculture require several essential and limited resources to produce biomass. These include land, sea space, fertile and functioning soils, water and healthy ecosystems, but also resources such as minerals and energy for the production of fertilisers. Their use also involves significant opportunity costs linked to the depletion or loss of ecosystem services. As competing uses of biomass and the legacy of past exploitation place these resources under severe pressure, the EU needs to produce "more with less" and develop smart sustainable farming, fisheries and aquaculture.