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Jan 23, 2024
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IntelComp National InfoDay Part 2

Jan 23, 2024

Agri-food

Mr. Bartzanas - Vice Rector of Research, Economics and Development of the Agricultural University of Athens, presented the challenges in the agri-food sector and the technological innovations in the sector, which can potentially provide solutions to these challenges. Greece is second in water consumption (where 80-87% is used in agriculture) after the USA. Agricultural production is the least prepared sector to cope with the impacts of climate change. The energy sector also affects agricultural production. The policy from the European Union with targets for 2030-2050 for drastic reductions in all inputs of medicines, fertilisers, water, and energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are serious and many farmers oppose them.

Smart agriculture technologies provide solutions for a holistic approach to agricultural production, using new services and systems. For example, using sensors, smart greenhouses with controlled production conditions, and robotic machinery. Similarly, the development of precision farming and systems, technologies and services is necessary.

Mr. Dallis - Director of Continuous Improvement,  Montelez, stressed that at Montelez, sustainability is one of the company's main pillars. This does not only refer to objectives such as reducing water consumption or carbon dioxide but also to quality, raw materials and packaging materials. The company has developed a target plan up to 2050: a 10% reduction in carbon dioxide by 2025, 50% by 2030, and a 100% reduction in 2050. This is done, for example, by choosing suitable pollution-free production and power supply machines. In the area of raw material supply, for example in cocoa, the company has trained producers on planning and optimal production without deforestation of new land. Similarly in cereals and cooperation with universities, producers are learning how to achieve optimal production and with the best possible water consumption.

Mr. Yannis Ioannidis, as President of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), followed with an online intervention where he highlighted the role of new technologies, artificial intelligence and data modeling and trending, in achieving the UN's sustainability goals. Alongside these challenges, various simulation models of different phenomena are underway to address them, considering the ethical use of technology and society's perception of the use and understanding of technology.

Ms. Tsiforou, CEO of GAIA AGRICULTURE, analysed the importance of the political dimension and focused on challenges concerning the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) 2023-2027 and the challenge of sustainability of Greek agriculture. She stressed that the new CAP has been based on the European policy of 2018, but was adapted and shaped based on the national needs and priorities of Greece with the flexibility to choose from a pool of measures/practices, where each country chooses the best compatible option. She then referred to the first objective of the CAP to address climate change, where she highlighted the conflict between agricultural policy planners and policymakers with ambitious targets in Brussels and the representatives of producers because the targets have been set without any impact study. There are climate-friendly practices to mitigate climate change and adapt to the objectives of the CAP, such as ecological practices and compensation for farmers who voluntarily apply them. There is a non-option of the measure where 3% of the aid could create a piggy bank from which the state would draw money for compensation. In terms of adjustment to the objectives, Greece did not opt for the measure of subsidising producers' insurance premiums, supporting mutual funds, or creating a mechanism for compensation to producers who do not use the above instruments. Another dimension stressed is the importance of timely information, knowledge and training of farmers on active policies and practices. In Greece, there is a decrease in the number of young farmers, a negative balance in livestock production costs (107.7%) and a decrease in the area and production of important traditional products such as cereals. Finally, at a national level, following a recommendation from the European Commission, there is a lack of legislative measures to support young farmers in terms of land use, investment and financing. In conclusion, Ms. Tsiforou stressed that if there is no strategy as a country, we will not be sustainable in the future.

This was followed by a constructive dialogue with all the speakers on the subject of agri-food, moderated by the reporter, Ms. Christofilidou (ERT).

The video recording of the event is available here:

IntelComp tools

Here is a brief presentation of how IntelComp STI-Viewer helps policymakers understand the results of national policies, see results in the agri-food sector and further analyze and compare information by sub-sector.

Browse the data for Greece in the Agri-Food sector.

Categorisation of research data by field of research in the field of Agri-food.

Publications by organisation.

Linking the Sustainable Development Goals to research.

Overview of citations of research publications with patents.

Finally, which organisations are the authors of publications that influence the agri-food sector at policy level?