An important step in promoting plant research was taken on 24th June 2004, when the European Commission officially launched `Plants for the Future` a European Plant Sector Platform. This multidisciplinary grouping aims to establish a long-standing public-private partnership to increase investment on research and innovation and to boost European competitiveness in relevant industrial sectors.
A wide group of stakeholders representing research institutions, industry,
farmers, the political sphere, financial world, regulatory authorities, as
well as consumer representatives have jointly published a Vision
A detailed agenda setting out the research needed to deliver the vision has been developed. This Strategic Research Agenda for `Plants for the Future` sets the scene for European agricultural research and development for the next two decades.
"`Plants for the Future` is an important demonstration of how working
together can build competitiveness. "This joint effort of all those involved
in the agricultural production chain to identify and take into account
scientific and technological potential, market drivers and consumer demand
can only be positive for the future of the agricultural sector," according
to Janez PotoÃƒÂ¨nik, EU Commissioner for Science and Research.
"Plant genomics and biotechnology, as outlined in the Strategic Research Agenda, will play a major role in ensuring sustainability of our economy through renewable biological resources."
The Stakeholders Proposal for a Strategic Research
discussed in EU wide Member
State consultative forums
, and is beginning to influence Member State
research funding in plant biotechnology. Already the German Government has
been actively using the Research Agenda to guide its research spending
plans. Others are set to follow.
Platform`s first activities is available.
The research agenda aims to produce healthy, safe and sufficient food and
feed while securing sustainable agriculture and landscape, developing green
products such as biomaterials and biofuels and securing EuropeÃ‚Â´s
competitiveness, consumer choice and good governance.
The European agricultural value chain has more than 600 billion Euros of turn-over each year, accounts for 8% of the European workforce, and includes 17 million farms. Research and application of plant genomics and biotechnology will help foster this leading industrial sector and maintain competitiveness in the face of some of the largest changes foreseen in the coming years.
Plant science is a key technology in delivering a bio-based economy where
energy, raw materials and renewables are increasingly produced by the
agricultural sector in an environmentally sustainable way.
For more information, contact:
Karin Metzlaff (EPSO)
Adeline Farrelly (EuropaBio)
Tel: +32 9 331 38 10/11
Tel: +32 2 739 1174 (Direct)
Mob: +32 475 93 17 24