Last week, I took part in a policy discussion on the future of food in Brussels with over 60 stakeholders from the EU agri-food sector. Organised by the ‘Food for Life’ platform, an industry-led public-private partnership that works closely with the European Commission, the event examined how to drive innovation and improve the sustainability of food systems.
Speaking at the event, the European Commission representative, Barend Verachtert, outlined the four priorities of the EU’s Food2030 programme: improving nutrition, achieving an environmentally sustainable food system, improving circularity and resource efficiency as well as driving innovation in food.
I outlined the important role retailers play in driving innovation in food and fostering collaboration, as we are at the heart of the food supply chain, interacting with everyone from farmers and food producers, through technology players, SMEs, logistics operators and finally consumers, reaching out and gathering feedback from all actors of the supply chain. I also presented SONAE’s white paper on the ‘Future of Food’, submitted to the European institutions earlier this year, outlining key recommendations on how EU and national policymakers can help foster innovation and cooperation in the food sector.
At SONAE, we share the firm belief that all stakeholders play a role in ensuring the successful development of innovative food solutions, spanning the bridge from research to bringing products to consumers. Joint undertakings and common objectives between these entities is key to developing a sustainable future of food in Europe. I am grateful to ‘Food for life’ for their inclusive approach at the event, and look forward to taking our collaboration further.
Maria João Podgorny
Public Affairs na Sonae