Research & Innovation - Participant Portal

TOPIC : Sweeteners and sweetness enhancers

Topic identifier: SFS-40-2017
Publication date: 14 October 2015

Types of action: RIA Research and Innovation action
Planned opening date:
04 October 2016
2nd stage Deadline:
14 February 2017 17:00:00
13 September 2017 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-2016-2017
Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

In recent decades, sweeteners and sweetness (flavour) enhancers (S&SEs) have become key ingredients in food produced and consumed in the EU, and exported to and from it. Because of their diversity (natural/artificial, geographical origin, processing, caloric content, etc.), S&SEs are used in different foodstuffs and food processes and in different dosages. However, information is lacking about new and emerging S&SEs throughout the agri-food chain, (e.g. their potential use in single or multiple food (ingredient) production chains, traceability, production and/or processing (cost) efficiency, safety and quality risks/benefits (for single or combined use), allergenicity and sustainability). The interaction of all these factors influences the role of S&SEs in a healthy diet and the fight against obesity. In addition, the toxicological impact of high doses, combined effects and the prolonged use of S&SEs are still unknown and the health-related aspects need further investigation.


Proposals should focus on health, obesity and safety aspects (including combined/prolonged use, metabolic effects and gut brain signalling, neuro-behaviour, and effects on the microbiota) associated with S&SEs. Activities indicated in the proposals should explore the sustainability of the whole value chain (ingredient sourcing, production/processing, market opportunities for new and emerging S&SEs). They should investigate consumer perceptions and preferences giving proper consideration to the underlying physiological, psychological and socio-economic drivers. The approach should be interdisciplinary and should give careful and detailed consideration to the regulatory framework. Proposals should also include dissemination to all stakeholders as well as the food industry, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Where relevant, proposals should address gender-specific aspects and the gender dimension in the research content shall be taken into account.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 9 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

With the objective of combating obesity, while improving sustainable food security in the EU, proposals should show how some, or all, of the following impacts will be achieved:

  • Promote healthy diets and contribute to combating obesity while improving sustainable food security in the EU.
  • Stimulate market uptake (with a specific focus on small and medium-sized enterprises) of new, healthy and sustainable S&SEs.
  • Strengthen the EU economy with a move towards more sustainable and future-oriented business practices.
  • Dissemination to EU food, health and food ingredient stakeholders, especially to food-related SMEs.
  • Evidence-based policy inputs on health, environmental and food safety issues.
Topic conditions and documents

Please read carefully all provisions below before the preparation of your application.

  1. List of countries and applicable rules for funding: described in part A of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.
    Note also that a number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects (follow the links to Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong & Macau, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Taiwan).

  2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in part B and C of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme
    Proposal page limits and layout: Please refer to Part B of the standard proposal template.

  3. Evaluation

    3.1  Evaluation criteria and procedure, scoring and threshold: described in part H of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme [, with the following exceptions]:

    3.2 Submission and evaluation process: Guide to the submission and evaluation process

  4. Indicative timetable for evaluation and grant agreement:

    Information on the outcome of single-stage evaluation: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

    Information on the outcome of two-stage evaluation:
          For stage 1: maximum 3 months from the deadline for submission.
          For stage 2: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

  5. Provisions, proposal templates and evaluation forms for the type(s) of action(s) under this topic:

    Research and Innovation Action:

    Specific provisions and funding rates
    Standard proposal template
    Standard evaluation form
    H2020 General MGA -Multi-Beneficiary
    Annotated Grant Agreement
  6. Additional provisions:

    Horizon 2020 budget flexibility

    Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply.

    Financial support to Third Parties – where a topic description foresees financial support to Third Parties, these provisions apply.

  7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions, and proposals must refer to measures envisaged. Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved. This topic participates per default in the open access to research data pilot which aims to improve and maximise access to and re-use of research data generated by projects:
  • The pilot applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available for open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan (to be provided within six months after the project start).
  • Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they are part of the Pilot, and will not be penalised for opting out of the Pilot.
  • Projects can at any stage opt-out of the pilot.
  • The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.Further information on the Open Research Data Pilot is made available inH2020 Online Manual.

8. Additional documents

Submission Service

The submission system is planned to be opened on the date stated on the topic header.

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