Innovation in agriculture

Agrifood 28-05-2020

UK farmers group backs call for allowing access to gene editing technology

The UK National Farmers Union (NFU) has backed calls made by a cross-party group for the new Agriculture Bill to allow British farmers to access to gene-editing technology post-Brexit. 
Agrifood 26-05-2020

COVID-19 crisis could ‘kick off digital revolution in agriculture’

Digital farming is set to boom in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis, given its capacity to help the EU farming sector improve its sustainability and recover from the outbreak's impact. But there are also considerable concerns raised about the pace of this change and whether farmers are adequately prepared for it.
Agrifood 20-05-2020

Commission upholds highly ambitious targets to transform EU food system

After several delays, the EU's new flagship food policy was finally released on Wednesday (20 May), confirming the aspiration of the EU executive to transform the European way of producing, distributing and consuming food.
Agrifood 13-05-2020

Insect-based feedstuffs hold ‘enormous potential’ for EU sustainability goals

With the presentation of the long-awaited Farm to Fork strategy due in the coming days, EURACTIV took a look at the potential that insects hold for contributing to the goals of the strategy and creating a more self-reliant, sustainable food system in the EU.
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Agrifood 06-05-2020

Sustainability and innovation should go hand in hand in the EU

In the last two decades, Europe has decided to go its own way in agricultural policies. While both North and South America, and also Japan have moved to even more technology-driven modern agriculture, Europe went backward and keeps banning more and more scientifically proven advances and methods in agriculture.
Agrifood 02-04-2020

Innovation spurred by COVID-19 crisis highlights ‘potential of small-scale farmers’

the recent coronavirus outbreak has put an enormous strain on the EU whole agri-food sector and especially on small-scale producers. However, farmers have been rapidly innovating to create novel means of selling their produce to keep themselves afloat.
Agrifood 24-03-2020

Embracing innovation for a stable and secure food supply

Amid the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, Europe must invest in innovation to enhance food security, as the ongoing crisis has laid bare the vulnerabilities of our seemingly strong system, writes Igor Teslenko.
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Agrifood 17-03-2020

What is genetic engineering? A plea for a rational definition of what it is and what it isn’t

The public debate on genetic engineering in agriculture is largely characterised by misinformation, myths and a confused understanding of nature, writes plant breeding and gene editing expert, Professor Hans-Jörg Jacobsen (PhD).
Agrifood 05-03-2020

Ensuring data sovereignty ‘major challenge’ for European farmers

The virtues of digital farming have been extolled by many, including the European Commission and industry voices. But, as a recent situation in the US demonstrates, digital farming carries concerns which requires careful consideration. 
Agrifood 28-02-2020

Sustainable rooftop-fish-farming conquers Brussels city heights

Europe's largest urban farm, located on the rooftops of the EU capital, raises fish and grows vegetables while meeting strict circular economy criteria. The founder of BIGH (Building Integrated Greenhouses), Steven Beckers, says his urban farm plans to emulate his successful practice across the border. EURACTIV France reports.
Agrifood 25-02-2020

Could robot weeders be the solution to France’s pesticide problem?

As farmers are urged to reduce their use of plant protection products, they are forced to take on manual weeding, a tedious task for which manpower is hard to find. But could so-called 'robot weeders' provide a solution to this problem? EURACTIV France reports.
Agrifood 24-02-2020

How is tech revolutionising the agricultural sector?

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High-tech is gaining ground in the age-old world of agriculture and agricultural innovations have gradually revolutionised work in the fields and on the farm in recent years.
Agrifood 24-02-2020

‘Agri-tech’ spreading like wildfire across French farms

Technology can already be found everywhere on French farms, but the so-called "agri-tech" trend wants to push innovation even further. Two hundred fifty of France's start-ups are already specialising in agriculture and working towards developing software, drones, robots, artificial intelligence and satellites. EURACTIV France reports.
Agrifood 24-02-2020

Embracing technology to feed a growing world

It is time for America and Europe to work together to solve the next great challenge facing us - to produce enough food, with fewer inputs, to feed a growing world population - which means embracing innovation and technology in a safe, sustainable agriculture, writes Sonny Perdue.
Agrifood 21-02-2020

EFSA will keep British experts despite Brexit [Part II]

The European Food Safety Authority will keep UK experts in its ranks despite Brexit, because science does not recognise borders "and we want to have the best people", the EU food watchdog chief told EURACTIV.com in an exclusive interview.
Agrifood 20-02-2020

EFSA chief: Assessing fast-changing agrifood innovation is key challenge [Part I]

Being equipped with the right methods to assess industry’s rapidly changing innovation will be a key challenge for the European Food Safety Agency, (EFSA), Bernhard Url, the EU food watchdog's chief, told EURACTIV.com in a wide-ranging interview.
Agrifood 17-02-2020

LEAK: EU plans ‘common data spaces’ to exploit agriculture and health potential

The EU aims to create common data spaces to increase the quality of services when it comes to agriculture and healthcare, according to a European Commission data strategy draft seen by EURACTIV.com. In the field of agriculture, inspired by a...
Agrifood 14-02-2020

DG AGRI backs new breeding techniques for pest management

Tasos Haniotis, the deputy director-general at European Commission's DG AGRI, views new breeding techniques as a way to manage pests in agriculture, according to a leaked document seen by EURACTIV.com.
Agrifood 12-02-2020

In Paris, organic farming takes over fallow parking lots

In Paris, as in many European cities, the number of cars is declining, which is leaving a vast amount of underground car parks empty. With its start-up project called "La Caverne", Cycloponics is reclaiming these urban territories using them as a way of growing plenty of organic vegetables. EURACTIV France reports.
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Agrifood 12-02-2020

Fighting malnutrition: Golden Rice and the EU’s GMO conundrum

In the last two decades, the cultivation of genetically biofortified crops, such as Golden Rice, to help solve the global humanitarian crisis of “malnutrition” remains elusive. Let’s consider the facts.
Agrifood 11-02-2020

Mutagenesis techniques must be subject to GMO regulation, says French court

The French government has been ordered to adapt its policy on plants developed using certain new plant breeding techniques (NPBTs), namely gene editing and in-vitro mutagenesis, in order to adhere to stricter rules for genetically modified organisms (GMOs), a French...
Agrifood 10-02-2020

Italian minister: Unlike gene editing, GMOs belong to the past

Italy's agricultural minister Teresa Bellanova expressed an interest in developing sustainable biotechnology, in the light of a milestone agreement on next-gen biotech between farmers organisation Coldiretti and the Italian Society of Agricultural Genetics (SIGA).
Agrifood 05-02-2020

‘New GMOs’: Kyriakides gets off on wrong foot with biased consultation

The new EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides recently told EURACTIV.com that her “priority is to gather more information” on gene editing. To this end, she said, "we will be preparing a study on new genomic techniques, foreseen for spring 2021”. Clearly, the design and set-up of such a study will be crucial to its outcome, writes Nina Holland.
Agrifood 03-02-2020

Renew Europe vows to break ‘taboos’ in EU agriculture

The centrist Renew Europe group in the European Parliament aims to “break taboos” in the agricultural sector, according to one of its Czech deputies, Martin Hlaváček.

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