Bioeconomy has wide sectoral coverage and the unique potential to link primary production at local level with multiple industrial processes and products under safe and sustainable operating boundaries.
So far the driving force for the development of bioeconomy worldwide and in Europe has been the societal transition towards circular and low carbon economies thus it has been based on its potential to provide green alternatives to the fossil- based production and consumption patterns.
Respectively, decision making in research, policy and industry has been based on comparisons of bio-based value chains with the ones that are of fossil fuel origin. Assumptions and metrics mostly related to environmental performance for reducing GHGs and delivering low carbon solutions. This narrative has only considered the ‘substitution’ paradigm and therefore the analyses are prejudiced towards this issue.
The recent unprecedent crisis however brings to surface a much wider role that bioeconomy can have to diversify supplies for food, feed and raw materials, bring together local communities and big industrial actors, contribute to circularity and climate neutrality whilst at the same time create employment and foster rural development.
EUBCE 2021 will provide the forum to exchange views and create new knowledge on a fresh perspective for the future sustainable development and operation of biobased value chains which will foster resilience and smooth transition to a circular economy, post COVID 19, within the framework of the European Green Deal.
The conference and exhibition will bring together stakeholders from industry, research and all forms of governance and steer discussions for a new ‘transformative’ logic that will turn the challenge for local economic resilience in crisis to opportunity for diversification through the wide deployment of bioeconomy.
Before the crisis discussions about transformation were still theoretical; now it is an action needed urgently, so please remember to join us for a dynamic debate of ‘our bioeconomy future’!

Calliope Panoutsou

Senior Research Fellow, Imperial College London, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Centre for Environmental Policy