By Joanna Dupont-Inglis, Secretary General, EuropaBio
Over the past couple of years, the European bioeconomy has become a key discussion point for policy makers, scientists and industry alike. The European Commission defined the bioeconomy as a more low-emissions and innovative economy which goal is to “reconcile demands for sustainable agriculture and fisheries, food security, and the sustainable use of renewable biological resources for industrial purposes, while ensuring biodiversity and environmental protection”. Investing solely in the development and commercialisation of new sustainable technologies and products is not enough to achieve such an ambitious goal.
The transition to a sustainable European bioeconomy requires a strong mobilisation in the bio-based industries throughout all segments of the value chain. More partnerships and stakeholders must unite and innovate new ideas to rapidly deploy bio-based economies at global but also at regional level in order to see sustainability through from beginning to end. Integration and cooperation of initiatives, efforts and knowledge between entrepreneurs, brands, local communities, policy makers, scientists, producers and journalists are thus key factors to raise awareness on the potential and benefits of the bioeconomy and make it a European success across sectors. Alliances and projects specifically put in place to serve this collaborative purpose have multiplied over the last decade and will remain important vehicles for change towards the implementation of the recently updated European Bioeconomy Strategy.