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The European Food System: The transition towards sustainability and climate mitigation


The European Food System: The transition towards sustainability and climate mitigation


Our society faces challenges more urgent than ever. The food sector is striving to transform the way that we produce, manage and consume food. This will achieve sustainable and resilient agricultural production systems that can at the same time help reduce emissions and adapt to changing environmental conditions.

Agriculture is both strongly impacted by climate change and a driver of climate change. Globally, the food system as a whole represents up to 37% of total global human-induced emissions.

The Covid-19 pandemic has also raised questions about the fragility of our food supply, putting food security back on the agenda. Coupled with the on-going threat of climate change, agriculture has a crucial role to play to ensure European food remains safe, nutritious, affordable and plentiful.

A sustainably-driven recovery in Europe will require a re-think of the agrifood system with an integrated approach to climate, food and ecosystems. There is a growing polarisation in the way society perceives solutions to agrifood challenges. Some focus on sustainability, whilst others favour economic ‘pragmatism’. To achieve sustainable food systems, policymakers must look at evidence-based arguments, engaging with actors from multiple sectors at local, national and regional level. Only this will lead to a holistic, fair, and coordinated approach. Ongoing investments in research and innovation will be crucial to achieve the necessary changes.

Join this EURACTIV Virtual Conference to discuss how the European food system can be changed, taking account of European resources, resilience, production, consumption, consumer choices and geographical balance. And how can this best be achieved sustainably, minimising the effects of climate change? Questions to be discussed:

-How can the Commission's 'European Green Deal' and the ‘Farm to Fork’ strategy help a faster transition towards sustainable food systems?
-How best to align objectives, targets and timelines to ensure a predictable regulatory environment, encouraging the innovation needed to achieve sustainable food systems?
-Which R&I pathways can support the transition towards sustainable food systems?
-How can industry encourage and support more sustainable farming with a focus on climate change?
-How to juggle consumers' purchasing power and willingness to pay, food affordability, and the true price of food?

This EURACTIV Virtual Conference is supported by FACCE-JPI and is part of the FACCE-JPI 10 Year Event “A world in transition: Journey towards a sustainable future” on 26 and 27 November.
To register for the sessions on 27 November, please visit the registration page on the FACCE-JPI website. If you have any questions regarding the other sessions, please contact

Supported by:





Wim Haentjens, Policy Expert, Food safety and the agri-food industry, DG RTD, European Commission
Atidzhe Alieva-Veli, MEP, AGRI Committee member, European Parliament
Máximo Torero, Chief Economist, FAO
Frank Ewert, Scientific Advisory Board Chair, FACCE-JPI


Brian Maguire, Journalist, EURACTIV


14:00 – 14:05 Introduction and House rules
14:05 – 14:20 Opening statements
14:20 - 15:25 Moderated discussion and Q&A
15:25 – 15:30 Closing statements


Matea Krivanek

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