Why does research and innovation on sustainable, circular and innovative value chains matter?

Sustainable, diverse and resilient value chains are a prerequisite for sustainable rural growth, for food security and for the sustainable use of biological resources.

Food and other bio-based products supply chains operate in an increasingly complex and dynamic environment characterised by new consumer demands, new and sometimes game-changing technologies, changing structures and cooperation modes.

The use of new and innovative business models can generate higher income for producers while keeping consumer prices affordable and improving the delivery of environmental and social benefits.

Research has a role to play in unravelling the links between the complexity of food systems and their efficiency, resilience and sustainability. It needs to develop the understanding of food chain dynamics and their interaction with non-food chains.

Farmers and foresters have for a long time produced bio-based products. The need to decarbonise the agricultural and the energy sectors to meet climate change goals is compounded with considerations of resource efficiency, and an increasing interest in green chemicals, green growth and circular economy.

Research and innovation in this area addresses low-carbon, short-chain or circular delivery systems for innovative bio-based applications, using a systems approach for the provision of biomass for all uses, whilst preserving the delivery of ecosystem services.

Funding opportunities

  • Horizon Europe

    Calls for proposals and funding information related to agriculture, forestry and rural areas.

  • Horizon 2020

    Calls for proposals related to sustainable, circular and innovative value chains are spread across numerous schemes in Horizon 2020. This page lists them and explains how you can apply.

  • European agricultural fund for rural development

    The rural development policy supports innovation through a range of interventions, including the European innovation partnership for agriculture (EIP-AGRI).

  • LIFE programme

    Some sustainable, circular and innovative value chains related calls may be found in this programme.

Collaboration and jobs

Projects and results

Scientific publications, tools and databases

  • Scientific publications 

    Scientific publications produced by the European Commission (JRC).

  • Scientific research tools and databases 

    The Commission's Joint Research Centre compiles databases and develops software and modelling tools.

  • EU Open Data Portal 

    Single point of access to open data produced by the EU institutions. All data is free to use for commercial and non-commercial purposes.

  • OpenAIRE

    You can access all scientific publications from Horizon 2020 via OpenAIRE.

  • Copernicus

    Access to agriculture data from the Copernicus programme.