During the three-day CROP Innovation & Business 2022 conference organized in Ghent (Belgium) by VIB, KeyGene and Iventus on April 27-29, international seeds-, traits-, food-, and AgTech experts discussed and debated influential trends, discoveries, and responsibilities in the AgTech sector. Talented entrepreneurs pitched their startups and many scientists and business leaders were invited on stage to present their view on developing solutions for the challenges agriculture is facing. Special emphasis was also given on young and junior scientists and business developers.
The conference came to the following conclusions;
- More than ever, innovative technologies toward food and crop development is "on-the-table". Many presenters expressed their support for UK's new legislation encouraging Gene Editing research. Participants also consider the review of EU’s rules on new genomic techniques a step in the right direction. This will drive the innovations further and amplify their positive impact on climate change, food security and human health.
- The Ukraine war will require a range of responses, actions and a high degree of responsibility from governments, public and private organizations, as local and global food security is considerably at stake. Participants at the conference see a role and responsibility here for the AgTech and farming community. Crop innovation will and can significantly contribute to solving global food security challenges.
- Access to a diverse and talented workforce is one of the biggest challenges our AgTech community faces and we see opportunities to jointly invest in talent development across our community.
- Innovation in science and technology is key to improve our global agrifood system.
- Provide a supportive environment for startups working towards impactful AgroFood solutions for society.
- Let's grow together one inclusive AgTech community crossing country borders in the EU and also worldwide and between public and private organizations, and able to take into account aspects of local economic contexts. We strongly advocate to develop partnerships to access cutting-edge AgTech.