The Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission approved on 17 November 2020 the proposal BERRY+ (BERRY+ establishing interregional cluster for the valorisation of natural resources and their side flows towards high added value applications and access to market; new thematic area).

The BERRY+ S3 partnership implements Action 2 of the Kainuu region BRIDGES action plan. It builds on the BRIDGES project experience from interregional collaborative schemes based on RIS3 complementarities and the corresponding research, knowledge and economic bases of the participating regions.

The BERRY+ S3 partnership brings together eight (8) regions from six (6) European member states. The partnership includes Finland (Kainuu (LP) and Helsinki-Uusimaa), Greece (Western Macedonia and Western Greece), Italy (Friuli Venezia-Giula and Lombardy), Portugal (Centro) and Spain (Catalonia).

The objective of the BERRY+ S3 partnership is to set up a self-sustaining, interregional cluster as an agent for industrial modernisation focusing on natural resources. 

BERRY+ is mostly a research and development (R&D) as well as design, development and testing (DDT) intiative. Prioritised types of industrial domains include, but are not restricted to, functional foods and associated technologies, vegetable-based proteins and associated technologies, herbs applications, medical applications and technologies, regenerative cosmetics, forest-economy sideflows applications and technologies.

The aim is to reinforce the integration and interactions of regional clusters into European (primarily), long-term growth and innovation-driven partnerships; ultimately, to pave the way for long-term development paths. This aim is foreseen to be achieved through European value chain (EVCs) collaboration including direct commercial benefits /strengthening existing and identifying and supporting emerging EVCs, interregional cluster upgrading and development cooperation (the traditional project-based initiatives), and joint policy enabling actions in the context of the RIS3 implementation of the participating regions.