4th Bioeconomy Stakeholder Conference: inspiring, dynamic and productive

The 4th Bioeconomy Stakeholder Conference (BEU2016) took place on 12 - 13 April 2016. At the end of the second day the European Bioeconomy Manifesto was handed over to the participants. About 400 people attended the BEU 2016 with backgrounds ranging from industries to academia.

At the first day there were inspirational talks from several high ranking stakeholders in the bioeconomy who shared their views and insights on the current societal challenges. The importance of renewable use of resources and moving towards a sustainable and circular economy were being stressed. In the afternoon participants were invited to visit throughout the country outstanding Dutch companies and organisations actively involved in the bioeconomy, illustrating the talks of the morning.

We can rewrite history - back to circular economy without 'fossil biomass'- Louise Fresco, key note speaker, president of Wageningen University

The second day was in the context of working towards Manifesto, a document being prepared to serve the future orientation of the European Bioeconomy Strategy, which will be reviewed and evaluated in 2016 by the Commission. The aim of Bioeconomy Strategy is to shift the European economy towards greater and more sustainable use of renewable resources to ensure a secure and healthy food and feed supply, as well as producing bio-based materials, energy, and other products. This will enable a more innovative and low-emissions economy – reconciling 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.

Among other issues, Manifesto states the proved value of and to build further on public-to-public partnerships. From Manifesto:

20. Cross-overs and connectivity between the sectors should be organised, giving special attention to cross-overs in the funding of research, pilots and demo’s. Open innovation, interdisciplinary research and public-private-partnerships are suitable approaches to enhance innovation. Here ‘Public to Public’ partnerships such as ERA-NETs, Joint Programming Initiatives (JPIs) and Joint Technology Initiatives (JTIs) have proved their value; these should be further built on.

The end of the two conference days full of inspiring talks, insight-giving panel discussions and productive efforts towards Manifesto the document the European Bioeconomy Manifesto – building blocks were handed over to the participants.

The BEU 2016 was under the auspices of the Dutch EU Presidency, co-organised by the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs and the European Commission.

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