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Europe: EIT Food to transform region’s food sector


The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) has announced EIT Food as the winner of a pan-European competition on the Food4Future call.

EIT Food will build sustainable end-to-end food supply chains realized through transformative innovation and education initiatives, with a central role for the consumer.

It has broad coverage in EU member states and associated countries and is a partnership where the European Food Information is one of 50 leading companies, universities, and scientific partners covering the entire food value chain.

With the consumers as change agents, each partner is committed to jointly transform the way in which we currently produce, distribute and consume our food.

Over the next seven years, the partners will invest close to €1.2 billion (US$1.29 million) matched with up to €400 million financed by the EIT.

As the future of food is high on the European Commission’s agenda, EIT Food will deliver cutting-edge European skills to rebuild a healthy and sustainable food system in Europe and beyond.

The ‘knowledge triangle’ of research, education and entrepreneurship will sharpen the global competitiveness of the European economy.

“EIT Food is committed to create the future curriculum for students and food professionals as a driving force for innovation and business creation; it will give the food manufacturing sector, which accounts for 44 million jobs in Europe, a unique competitive edge,” says Peter van Bladeren, VP Nestec, global head regulatory and scientific affairs for Nestlé and chair of the Interim Supervisory Board of EIT Food.

EIT Food as innovation community will become a consumer-driven innovation engine for all actors covering the food value chain.

It will build a trusted food innovation ecosystem that supports consumers in their right to a healthy and more environmentally sustainable diet.

“By involving the consumer as change agents in all our activities, we will rebuild their trust in the food system,” Says Dr. Ellen de Brabander, senior VP Global R&D Nutrition PepsiCo, and interim CEO of EIT Food.

“60% of European consumers will achieve intake levels of positive nutrition including fruits and vegetables, whole grains and proteins by 2030 as well as reduce the levels of salt, sugar and saturated fat as recommended by WHO (World Health Organization) and European authorities.”

“And we will cut food waste by 50% within 10 years.”

EIT Food will organize international exchange programs for students, and develop a unique interdisciplinary EIT labelled Food System M.Sc. for graduates.

It will train thousands of students and food professionals via workshops, summer schools and online educational programs like MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) and SPOCS (Specialized Private Online Courses).