Sustainable and circular bioeconomy for food systems transformation

FAO DG underlines role of innovation in transforming agrifood systems at EU Bioeconomy Conference


On October 6–7, FAO joined partners online and in Brussels for the high-level conference on The Bioeconomy - Enabling the European Green Deal in Challenging Times. The conference marked ten years of the European Union’s Bioeconomy Strategy and was an excellent opportunity for delegates to discuss the strategy’s progress and next steps for sustainable bioeconomy development as a solution to global challenges.

FAO’s mandate to lead global bioeconomy discussions in food and agriculture

In 2015, 62 agriculture ministers at the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture highlighted the importance of developing a sustainable bioeconomy, calling on FAO to coordinate international work on bioeconomy to enhance food and nutrition security worldwide. This spurred the formation of the FAO-led International Sustainable Bioeconomy Working Group, a cross-regional network that comprises members of a broad range of expertise and backgrounds, from policy to research, private sector, civil society and international organizations.

More recently, with the endorsement of the FAO Strategic Framework 2022-31, FAO Members, including the European Union, recognised Bioeconomy for Sustainable Food and Agriculture as one of 20 FAO programme priority areas for the next decade. This reinforces the Organization’s commitment to promoting bioeconomy as an innovation driver in agrifood systems transformation.

DG delivers high-level opening speech

FAO Director-General QU Dongyu started his intervention at the EU Bioeconomy Conference’s high-level opening by congratulating the EU on the tenth anniversary of its bioeconomy strategy. He outlined the need to “strengthen and increase international cooperation in the bioeconomy field with other key partners to bring about the innovative and transformative changes that can improve the lives and livelihoods of all”. Dr QU stressed how “we must fully recognize agriculture is a key part of the solution” and that “innovation across agrifood systems is critical”. He also highlighted the need for partnerships to achieve agrifood systems transformation, while acknowledging the much common ground shared by FAO and the EU in this area.

For more, read the FAO press release here.