Mr. Julio Herreros, General Director of DG of Innovation, Labor, Industry and Trade and Mrs. María Jesús Miñana, General Director of DG  Agriculture and Livestock, have taken part this morning, in the ICVV’s  administrative building in Finca La Grajera, in the kick-off meeting of the Interreg Europe-funded Project of international cooperation «AgriRenaissance» which aims at improving the regional development policies in order to increase the R&D&I resources and capacities of the agri-food sector.

La Rioja Government, through the DG of Agriculture, Livestock and DG of Innovation, leads this Project which will last for four years and where the Agri-food Technological Center (Ctic Cita) from La Rioja, Mazovia Development Agency Plc, and Mazovia Government (Poland), National Paying Agency  (Lithuania), Calabria Government (Italy), and the Portuguese cluster ANIMAFORUM take part.
The project, which will boost collaboration between regions and encourage implementation of strategic technologies such as ICT or Biotechnology, will be around three thematic areas: R&D&I infrastructures and capacities, public-private cooperation, and hybridization of the agri-food sector with other sectors within and between regions.
The first stage of the Project starts tomorrow and will last until May 2020. During these two years, field visits will be organized in the five European partner regions, carrying out the good practices exchange process between partners. As a result of this process, a regional diagnosis, a guide with the identified good practices and an action plan will be created. This action plan will be performed in a roadmap of the public policies aimed at improving the competitiveness of La Rioja’s agri-food sector.

The EU agri-food sector has a great potential for contributing to the economic growth of the regions, even though its complexity, its limited innovation and the fragmentation of the existing resources in terms of research and development, makes it necessary to articulate funding and policy instruments that allow growth, avoid duplication of investments and promote the emergence of new value chains between different economic sectors and at the transnational level.
Through AgriRenaissance Project, the application of the innovative methodologies in the design of R&D&I public policies, the establishment of knowledge networks at European level, and the optimization of the public and private scientific infrastructures at regional level will be sought. On the latter point, La Rioja Government has proposed the challenge to improve the efficiency of the use of its scientific facilities to put them in value with the other agents implied in the innovation and development processes.