Ingredients for a Circular Economy

As S3 Partnership we support the development of innovative ingredients for cross-sectoral applications, while fostering circularity.

Ingredients for a Circular Economy

New documents! ​​​​​​
  • Governance structure (Feb. 2021) 
  • S3 NI & Green Deal (Feb. 2021)
See related documents section below.
By 2050, the agri-food sector will have to feed 2.3 billion more people, leading to an increase in world-food needs and food producers will be challenged to continue to improve food quality and productivity in a sustainable way. Over time, it is expected that people will become more aware of a range of issues including food safety, health benefits, corporate social responsibility, production systems and innovations, sustainability and food origins. Farmers, food companies, retailers, will have to adapt to consumers’ demand, by suggesting differentiated products (food quality and functionality, safety, and environmental and social attributes). These trends underlie the ambitions set out in the EC initiative FOOD 2030 and associated action plans such as the ETP Food for Life for example. Moreover, the question of “impact” of any activity/process on sustainability is of crucial interest nowadays.

Consumers are increasingly expected to turn towards products that claim to offer “clean-label”, sustainable, health and well-being benefits. This opens opportunities for both inherently ‘healthy’ products as well as ideas for new ingredients and alternative food products. The identification of functional/nutritional ingredients to answer these demands can be done from sidestreams coming from the agrifood industry or directly from new sources that have valuable properties for EU companies. As the impact of any industrial activity on sustainable development goals is of utmost importance nowadays, every step of any identified value chain in this Partnership will be challenged on questions like “zero-waste approaches”, reduction of waste, energy, water, chemical use, economical viability, etc


Thematic working areas

The partnership builds an interregional network/database composed of multiple entries, in which global consumer trends and habits, market trends and all needs identified in industrial application fields, are followed and registered, allowing the partnership partners to identify subjects of interest for their core activities or for potential new business developments over Europe.

After the identification of new trends, business cases, and process/product developments, partners assess the opportunities to develop new products and services based on new/improved/novel ingredients/additives and will benefit from the “technology network” available in the database/network. In this way they can identify the available and existing actions and technologies and get an overview of the pilot facilities throughout partner regions. They also highlight their lack of competences enabling to cover the entire value chain. All these steps will systematically be challenged and analysed in accordance with sustainable development goals.

This will eventually lead to the identification of investment opportunities within the value chain, for example addressing technology gaps, proposing pilot or demonstrator facilities that will be aligned with business needs for economic actors. The partnership will promote interregional collaboration between a diversity of partners and strengthen competitiveness of industries in their aim to better respond to specific consumer demands emerging from the market analysis. This partnership thus offers the unique opportunity for interregional demand-driven innovation in the field of ingredients, with a strong emphasis on sustainability issues at each step. An action plan will be developed to target potential innovation opportunities.

The driving force of the partnership processes will be the collection and analysis of consumer trends, technology developments and market demands observed in the regional markets by the cluster organizations, living labs, key opinion leaders and industry players (both B2C and B2B companies).
The ecosystem

The building of a strong technology network, with the necessary skills and competences to detect consumer/market demands is essential to support the development of innovative ingredients. Moreover, companies engaged in developing, producing and selling innovative ingredients could be helped by this transregional technology network. Furthermore, Partners will map all available pilot centers or technological facilities present in their regions. At the sectoral level, the Partners have already decided to combine several types of sectors (chemistry, cosmetics, etc.) with a strong collaboration network with bioeconomy actors. The ecosystem of this Partnership also involves multiple disciplines (consumer analysis, extraction and down-stream processing technologies, nutritional science, biotechnology, etc.) to ensure that a broad-based approach is deployed to better identify trans sectoral and trans-regional opportunities.

Contributions to SDGs

  • SDG 2. Zero hunger
  • SDG 3. Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
  • SDG 12. Responsible consumption and production
  • SDG 17. Partnerships for the goals
  • SDG 2. Zero hunger
  • SDG 3. Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
  • SDG 12. Responsible consumption and production
  • SDG 17. Partnerships for the goals
Country Region Organisation
Emilia Romagna
Spain Galicia CLUSAGA
Spain La Rioja
País Vasco
Food + i
France Auvergne
Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
Greece Central Macedonia RDFCM
France Brittany
Pays de la Loire
Belgium Wallonia WAGRALIM
Spain Navarra Nagrifood

Contacts details of the leading regions

Contact details of DG REGIO

Related documents

Monitoring reports containing a management report and a progress report prepared by the lead regions are available here:
(282 KB - PDF)

Other relevant documents:
Scoping note S3 Nutritional Ingredients (January 2020)
(2.3 MB - PDF)
Governance Struture (February 2021)
(1.1 MB - PDF)
S3 NI & Green Deal (February 2021)
(333 KB - PDF)

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