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This project has received funding from the European Unionís Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 652637.

Societal Challenge 2 (SC2)

Activities under H2020 SC2 ‘Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research and the bioeconomy’ aim at making the best of our biological resources in a sustainable way. The objective is to contribute to securing sufficient supplies of safe, healthy and high quality food and other bio-based products, by developing productive, sustainable and resource-efficient primary production systems, fostering related ecosystem services and the recovery of biological diversity, alongside competitive and low carbon supply chains. This will accelerate the transition to a sustainable European bioeconomy, bridging the gap between new technologies and their implementation. To achieve this objective, the SC2 Work Programmes part offers opportunities in finding diverse and innovative solutions to well-identified challenges in key EU policy priorities. The 2018-20 Work Programme is composed of three calls: 'Sustainable Food Security - SFS', 'Blue Growth - BG', ‘Rural Renaissance - RUR' and ‘Food and Natural Resources - FNR'.

Total budget for 2014-2020: 4152 M € (SC2 calls 2020: 555.39 M €)

Main activities

Agri-food sector for a safe and healthy diet

Ensuring food security goes beyond securing a sufficient supply. It also requires social and economic access to safe and nutritious food. Food consumption has impact on human health and the environment. The challenge is how to meet consumers' needs and preferences while minimizing the related impact on health and the environment. Research and innovation will address food and feed security and safety, the competitiveness of the European agri-food industry and the sustainability of food production, processing and consumption. It will cover the whole food chain and related services from primary production to consumption.

Research areas:

  1. Consumers
  2. Nutrition
  3. Food processing
  4. Food quality & safety
  5. Environmental impact

Agriculture and forestry

Agriculture and forestry have always had, and still maintain, an important role for EU’s society: they supply reliable, healthy and nutritious food as well as feed and non-food products for a wide range of industries. They shape and contribute to our landscapes, provide public goods, and keep the countryside alive by providing jobs. Research activities and policies will help to cope with the three main challenges these sectors are facing today: securing viable food production in face of a growing world food demand; ensuring sustainable management of natural resources and climate action; and finally to contribute to a balanced territorial development of the EU’s rural areas and their communities.

Research areas:

  1. Agriculture, Crops, natural resources and forestry
  2. Animal production and breeding, health and welfare
  3. Direct policy support

Aquatic living resources and marine research

Oceans and seas represent over 70% of the earth's surface, and living aquatic resources can provide a significant contribution to food, energy and bio-based products. The objective is to sustainably manage and exploit aquatic living resources to maximize benefits from Europe's oceans, seas and inland waters. This includes optimizing the sustainable contribution of fisheries and aquaculture to food security, boosting innovation through blue biotechnologies and fostering cross-cutting marine and maritime research to harness the potential of Europe's oceans, seas and coasts for jobs and growth.

Research areas:

  1. Fisheries research
  2. Aquaculture research
  3. The oceans of tomorrow

Bio-based industries

The transition from fossil-based European industries towards low carbon, resource efficient and sustainable ones is a major challenge. It entails the transformation of conventional industrial processes and products into environmentally friendly bio-based ones, the development of integrated bio-refineries and the opening of new markets for bio-based products. Research and innovation will provide the means to reduce the Union's dependency on fossil resources and contribute to meeting its energy and climate change policy targets for 2020.

Investments in research and innovation under this societal challenge will support Europe in contributing to food security, climate protection and sustainability. It will also enable Europe to take leadership in the concerned markets and will play a role in supporting the goals of the Common Agricultural Policy, the European Bioeconomy Strategy, and more broadly of the Europe 2020 strategy and its flagship initiatives 'Innovation Union' and 'Resource-efficient Europe'.

More information is available here:

You can find open and forthcoming SC2 calls and topics here:
Funding & tender portal for SC2 calls