EPSO welcomes in a first reaction the provisional agreement on Horizon Europe. It fully supports further strengthening the successful European Research Council (ERC) programmes as well as the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) which have achieved major successes. EPSO urges to give more balanced consideration to basic research in relation to the other components (applied research, […]

Forests are vital for our survival. They act to clean filter the air we breath and the water we drink and help provide the food we eat. They are also used for medicine and fuel by more than a billion people worldwide. Green spaces, including forests, are beneificial for the health and wellbeing of humans […]

The EU institutions – the Council of the EU, the European Parliament and the European Commission – have reached a provisional political agreement, subject to formal approval by the European Parliament and Council, on Horizon Europe.  Budgetary aspects are subject to the agreement on the EU’s Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). The agreement enables the European […]

Global Food Venture’s Summer School, Boot Camps, Mentoring and Conference applications are now open! 🌍🍅🥕🍊🥦🍎🥔🍒🍑🍓🍌🥝🍏🍍👩‍🌾👩‍🍳👩‍🔬 Global Food Venture offers a unique entrepreneurship-mobility programme for talented PhD students across Europe who want to fuel innovation in food systems. Participants will expand their business knowledge and skills through a tailor-made thematic curriculum, network with major players from […]

In response to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) notification No. 2019-023, EPSO nominated on 15.3.2019 two experts to the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Synthetic Biology: Frank Hartung and Thorben Sprink, from the EPSO Agricultural Technologies Working Group. Completion of submission was confirmed by the CBD secretariat on 18.3.2019. Background: The Conference of […]

The Coordination and Support Action MicrobiomeSupport (www.microbiomesupport.eu) had its first major activity and event, the Common Ground Workshop, which took place from 4-5 March 2019 in Vienna. More than hundred participants from academia, industry and the policy sector, coming from 25 countries world-wide, got together to start a major mapping activity on microbiome R&I activities […]

TOMRES are holding their 4th meeting in Athens! It is great to see the already successful @H2020_TOMRES project plan to progress and develop further. As its partners are being updated about the evolution of the project, we look forward to this project achieving even greater innovations and improvements in the future. 🍅🍅🍅

Plants are unique organisms. They can produce sugars just from sunlight, carbon dioxide and water. This ability to directly synthesize their own food has enabled plants to successfully colonise, adapt to, and diversify within almost every niche on the planet. Biologists estimate the total number of plant species to be about 250,000. Plants are the […]

EPSO publishes its statement to the ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on organisms obtained by mutagenesis (case C-528/16) stating that the ruling disregards scientific evidence. Genome editing is not the only answer to current challenges of agriculture and society, but it represents an important tool for harnessing plant science knowledge toward a […]

The Fascination of Plants Day is a fantastic opportunity for you to immerse yourself in the fascinating world of plants. We encourage you to organise plant-related community events to showcase the fascination and importance of plants and plant science. See our FoPD 2017 Success Stories for ideas of events that you can organise in your […]

EPSO is delighted to announce the launch of the fifth Fascination of Plants Day (FoPD), which will take place on May 18th 2019! The Fascination of Plants Day celebrates the wonder and importance of plants and plant sciences. It hosts a wide variety of plant-based interactive community events run by scientific institutions, universities, botanical gardens […]

Read the public version of the EPSO Newsletter – Spring 2019 or log in to the Members Only section to access the full version.

EPSO has created two promotional videos for the TOMRES project which are now available on YouTube: “Europe teams up for tomato’s future in the TOMRES project” and “TOMRES projects the benefits of optimized tomato production“. See HERE about the participation of EPSO in the TOMRES project.

Job alert! EPSO is looking for a motivated and dynamic Publications Officer to support its team as a permanent member of staff at the Brussels office. Deadline for applications: 16th January 2019. Apply HERE.

EC Chief Scientific Advisors: A Scientific Perspective on the Regulatory Status of Products Derived from Gene Editing and the Implications for the GMO Directive (see background information). The advisors conclude that the GMO Directive should be revised to reflect current knowledge and scientific evidence, and as part of a broad dialogue with relevant stakeholders and […]

Following the European Court of Justice ruling, that plants obtained by recent techniques such as CRISPR-Cas9-mediated genome editing mutagenesis are regulated as GMO, the VIB statement addresses the huge problems Europe will face in plant breeding in the future. EPSO anticipates the same problems as depicted in the statement, which is in line with our […]

SoAR (Supporters of Agricultural Research) published “Developing Global Priorities for Plant Research” report describing five “approaches” to addressing the greatest challenges facing agriculture in the 21st Century, including increasing production while reducing inputs in a changing climate. It emphasizes how the advent of new tools and technologies – such as CRISPR, computer modeling, and sensors […]

European Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) Roadmap 2018 published, identifying 8 projects with ESFRI Landmark status and 6 new projects entering the roadmap.

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) 2018 setting out actions to achieve the goal by 2030 and confirming a rise in world hunger: the number of people who suffer from hunger has been growing over the past three years, returning to levels from almost a decade ago. Multiple forms of […]

High level event: Sustainable and circular Bioeconomy Conference on 22.10.2018 in Brussels. Online registration opened. See more information.

2018 IPBO Conference: “Scientific Innovation for a Sustainable Development of African Agriculture”, 30-31 August 2018, Ghent, BE

EPSO publishes a first reaction to the Court of Justice of the EU ruling regarding mutagenesis and the GMO Directive in which European Plant Scientists express their disappointment on the ruling which classifies plants obtained by recent techniques such as CRISPR-Cas9-mediated genome editing as GMO that are subject to extensive pre-market risk evaluations. It is […]

Announcement: EPSO is looking for a PhD student in life sciences to do either a remote or an on-site three months traineeship in EPSO starting September 2018. Applications by 9th September. For more information, see the Call for Trainee.

Court of Justice of the EU: Organisms obtained by mutagenesis are GMOs and are, in principle, subject to the obligations laid down by the GMO Directive. See Ruling in EN.

Implementing the Nagoya Protocol by national legislation in the countries of Europe, statement, asking the European Commission and the Member States to support the adoption of uniform legislation across Europe for the exchange and use of Plant Genetic  Resources by applying the multilateral system enshrined in the FAO International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for […]

Access to Digital Sequence Information must remain open; calling upon the convention of parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), national and EU decision makers to maintain Open Access to Digital Sequence Information as part of the ‘Open Science’ principle and therefore NOT to include this in the Nagoya Protocol as this would substantially […]

Funding opportunities for Agricultural Research for Development (AR4D) at PAEPARD Blog covering areas such as: 1. Agriculture; 2. Agribusiness; 3. Bio-diversity, environment, climate change; 4. Fellowships/scholarships/grants; 5. Awards.

‘Plants for Human Health’ report on the European Parliament – Plant ETP workshop held on 23.5.2018 at the EP in Brussels.

Plant Biology Europe Congress, Copenhagen 18-21.6.2018 – Join lively debates in the Science Communication Workshop on Mo, 18 June 13:15 – 14:15 and in the Open Science – Science policy Panel Discussion on Tu, 19 June 13:15 – 14:45. Program on the Official conference page. EPSO Information. One day and full registration open.

Proposal for the Specific Programme implementing Horizon Europe – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (FP9) – for a decision of the European Parliament and of the Council. Specific Programme proposal, Annex to SP proposal. Provide feedback to EC until 2 August 2018 to be summarised to EP and Council.

Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing Horizon Europe – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (FP9), laying down its Rules for Participation and Dissemination. Regulation proposal, Annex to Reg proposal. Provide feedback to EC until 2 August 2018 to be summarised to EP and Council.

Plant Biology Europe FESPB/EPSO 2018 Congress, Copenhagen 18-21.6.2018 – complete program at Official conference page. EPSO Information. One day registration open in addition to full registration.

Announcement: 2nd Workshop of the Working Group on Plants and Microbiomes “Implementing a Plants and Microbiomes Strategy in Europe” will take place in Cologne on 12 Oct 2018. Register by 2nd October.

Welcoming the Advice of the British Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment (ACRE) on genome-edited camelina plants with increased levels of oleic acid, Opinion.

Proposed ‘Science and Innovation Pact’ as framework for the UK-EU partnership on science, research and innovation aiming at full association to Horizon Europe (FP9) around structure, influence and contribution to FP9 as core part of the UK-EU future partnership.

The unofficial Fascination of Plants Day (FoPD) 2018 is held today across the world as a warm up for the next official Fascination of Plants Day in May 2019. Follow up on Twitter via the #PlantDay.

A renewed agenda for research and innovation – Europe’s chance to shape its future – Urging EU leaders to adopt the EU budget 2021-27 including proposed innovation funding, increase investments in R& I to meet the 3% target, make regulations fit innovation, create synergies between EU programmes, modernise public research with an open science label, launch […]

AgriResearch – Innovating for the future of farming and rural communities – conference presentations online, following up the Strategic approach to EU agricultural research and innovation, 20.7.2016.

Register for the “Research & Innovation for Food and Nutrition Security – Transforming our food systems” conference in Plovdiv / BG on 14-15.6.2018, continuing the Food 2030 EU R&I policy response.

Proposal for the next Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027 (MFF) including 97.9 Bill € for Horizon Europe (vs 70 Bill € for H2020). Commissioners Moedas and Hogan announced on 3 May a 10B€ budget proposal for the Horizon Europe (FP9) Global Challenge Food and natural resources (successor of H2020 SC2 which had 3.85 Bill €). MFF […]

EPSO Newsletter – Spring 2018 public shortened version has been published. The full version of the EPSO Newsletter – Spring 2018 is available exclusively to the EPSO members.

EPSO Newsletter is a biannual EPSO publication drafted exclusively for the EPSO members however, EPSO always publishes a summarised version for the general public. Please, take a look at the public version of the EPSO News 47 – Spring 2018.

Booklet on New Plant Breeding Techniques in a new era in which Scientists of Wageningen University & Research gives new insights into plant breeding techniques such as genome editing.

The Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) Call for proposals 2018 (H2020-BBI-JTI-2018) is now open. Call closure forseen: 6 September 2018. To view the topics and submit proposals visit the Participant Portal.

Manifesto “More funds for research and innovation” launched by CNR, CNRS, CSIC, Leibnitz and Helmholtz to highlight the need of more funds to research and innovation in the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). Heads of organizations, institutes, companies as well as individuals are invited to endorse this online so the initiators can bring it to […]

Submission to the EC consultation on EU research and innovation missions (FP9), based on the Mazzucato report, welcoming the mission concept and offering to help further develop and implement it as it highlights similar principles we proposed in the EPSO position on FP9(19.9.2017). EPSO suggest three mission ideas: 1) 1001 Crops – diverse crops for diverse diets and human […]

Comment on the report of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Synthetic Biology: The report was commissioned under the UN Environment programme (UNEP), Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). See here original report of the AHTEG and all submitted comments.

Use the new partnering tool at suscrop.eu/call1 to help find suitable partners. It can be used to Post a Partner Offer/Request and / or to Search List of Partner Offers/Requests posted by others . See SusCrop-ERA-NET: Announcement first transnational Call in the field of sustainable crop production, 17.1.2018 Deadline pre-proposals 4.4.2018, full proposals 31.8.2018

Submission to EC consultation “EU funds in the area of investment, research and innovation, SMEs and single market”, highlighting Research and Innovation across the EU as top priority for the EU funds post 2020 to bring European scientists and societies closer together to help build an inclusive, collaborative Europe and world and help achieving the UN […]

Launch of the Horizon 2020 project, CHIC (Chicory Innovation Consortium), studying chicory as a multipurpose crop for dietary fibre and medicinal terpenes. Press release.

LIFE Multiannual Work Programme 2018-2020: In 2018 proposals to the LIFE’s sub-programme for environment will, for the first time, follow a two-phase submission procedure of pre- and full proposals. Call publication mid-April 2018.

Updated Fascination of Plants Day Success Stories 2017. Over 1000 fascinating events were organised in 52 countries, inspiring worldwide interest in plant science. EPSO welcomes scientists, farmers, industry and educational institutions to join the next official FoPD around 18 May 2019.

Pre-announcement of PRIMA Calls, a new Partnership on Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area, including sustainable farming. Participating States: DZ, HR, CY, FR, DE, EL, IL, IT, LU, MT, PT, SL, ES, TR. Section 1 (18M€ budget) calls for Research & Innovation Actions (RIA) as defined by H2020, pre-proposal deadline 17.4.2018. Section 2 (32M€ budget) calls for […]

First reaction on the Advocate General’s Opinion regarding mutagenesis and the Genetically Modified Organisms Directive, welcoming this as an important step in clarifying the GMO directive. EPSO awaits the decision of the Court of Justice of the EU foreseen for 2018.

Advocate General’s Opinion in Case C-528/16 (regarding mutagenesis and the Genetically Modified Organisms Directive). – Press Release in EN; Opinion in EN

Announcement first transnational Call in the field of sustainable crop production; Deadline pre-proposals 4.4.2018, full proposals 31.8.2018; participating funders are from DE, FR, NO, IE, TK, EE, UK, PL, BE, FI, LV, NL, ES, AT, DK, IT, RO, HU and CAN. The ERA-NET-Cofund on Sustainable Crop Production (SusCrop) started on 1.1.2018. under Horizon 2020.

Scientists call for GMO opt-in option: The EC should “develop a Directive for individual member states to authorize cultivating a GM crop in their territories after the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has concluded that the GM crop in question is as safe as the organism from which it is derived” to overcome problems of the […]

EPSO Young Plant Scientist Award – Winners are Shumei WANG (fundamental plant research) and Andreas CARSTENSEN (applied plant research). EPSO encourages the development of ideas and imaginative thinking in the plant sciences; Shumei and Andreas will present their research at the Plant Biology Europe EPSO/FESPB joint congress in Copenhagen 17-21.6.2018.

EASAC: Report from European science academies calls for urgent action on food and nutrition security.

Briefing on EC Horizon 2020 work programme for 2018-20 on the members’ only website. All information for plant scientists in one document and additional researched information e.g. evaluator database, hints on ERC, partner search.

Erasmus+ 2018 Call for Proposals published, 2.7 billion euro budget includes support for mobility and cooperation in education. Additional info in the Members Only section.

Cofund ForestValue – Innovating forest-based bioeconomy: Transnational call for joint European research projects. The indicative total budget is €25 million, deadline for pre-proposals 23 January 2018

Position on the next EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, FP9, welcoming the continued inclusion of the successful Excellent Science pillar in FP9, and setting out our position for research priorities and mechanisms to engender a mission-based approach to close the research and innovation cycle through increasing support for collaborative basic research, encouraging increased […]

Opinion on the SAM Explanatory Note on New Techniques in Agricultural Biotechnology welcoming the science based view on applications and implications including risk and benefits. EPSO calls for urgent action to promote progress in plant science and commercial breeding in Europe to meet challenges for agriculture in due time. EPSO encourages the European Commission to […]

Synthetic Biology should not be confused with the application of new breeding techniques, updated statement, reemphasizing that the techniques themselves do not define whether an organism or product is of synthetic origin just by their mere application; and that a synthetic organism should be substantially different from any organism that can occur in nature.

Registration opened for the EC high-level conference on “Modern Biotechnologies in Agriculture – Paving the way for responsible innovation” in Brussels on 28.9.2017. EPSO provides science advice to policy including Agricultural Technologies which play a key role to address the challenges we face today and in future. EPSO advices to support the development and use […]

The 4th international Fascination of Plants Day took place around the world in 52 countries around 18th May with over 830 interactive events celebrating the fascination and manifold uses of plants for food and nutritional security, paper, medicine, chemicals, energy and enjoyable landscapes. Find all you need to promote the event in the PR toolbox, […]

Genome editing: scientific opportunities, public interest and policy options in the EU, report launch in Brussels, Explanatory Note from EC’s High Level Group of Scientific Advisors

Announcement call for pre-proposals. ERA-Net co-fund invites consortia (min. 4 research organisations and/or private and public practitioners from 1 African + 2 European* partner countries) to submit pre-proposals for research and innovation in the countries concerned for the EU-AU partnership on food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture. Deadline will be in June 2017 shortly […]

Updated Statement: Crop Genetic Improvement Technologies, EPSO welcomes the majority opinion of the Member States “New Techniques Working Group” report and asks the EC to follow these recommendations and provide legal certainty for science and industry regarding application and exploration of New Plant Breeding Techniques (NPBTs) to allow the plant sector addressing the Grand Challenges […]

Synthetic Biology is much more than the application of new breeding techniques, statement.

TempAg: a new international research network to facilitate cross-country collaboration on sustainable agriculture in the world’s temperate regions. The foresight workshop 5-7.10.2016 identified emerging priorities and research challenges for policy & industry (blog posts by Global Food Security and GPC)

European research and innovation for Food and Nutrition Security (FNS) – FOOD 2030 Conference background document, 13.10.2016, comprising the FNS priorities NUTRITION for sustainable and healthy diets, CLIMATE smart and environmentally sustainable food systems, CIRCULARITY and resource efficiency of food systems, and INNOVATION and empowerment of communities. More on Food 2030 policy. See EPSO submission […]

Fact sheets on New Breeding Technologies, including: Site-Directed Nucleases (e.g. genome editing), Oligonucleotide-Directed Mutagenesis, RNA-directed DNA-Methylation, Cisgenesis, Grafting using GM plants, Reverse breeding, and Agroinfiltration.

Updated Statement: Crop Genetic Improvement Technologies

Updated Statement: Crop Genetic Improvement Technologies

Submission to EC consultation on the Role of Research in Global Food and Nutrition Security (summary reply). Completed online questionnaire here.

EC-EPSO EXPO Conference on ‘Crop genetic improvement technologies’ on 14 July 2015 at the CNR headquarter in Milano was a major success with excellent and well balanced presentations and very open discussions – see discussion on twitter hashtag #expocrops. Read the background information here.

Crop Genetic Improvement Technologies, Statement

Plant breeders’ rights and patent rights, Statement

GMO cultivation – national opt-out, Statement

Genetic diversity a hidden tool in coping with climate change in ‘Coping with climate change: the roles of genetic resources for food and agriculture’ book release, 19.1.2015. Calling to improving knowledge, conservation and use of crop wild relatives, locally adapted varieties and breeds, plants, animals and microbes living inside of these and in the soil; […]

The Fascination of Plants Day 2015 is launched today, with 39 countries who have already confirmed their participation | See success stories from 2013,

Working Group Meeting ‘Towards longer term partnerships of scientists from Europe and Developing Countries’, 16.10.2014, Meeting report.

Towards longer term partnerships of scientists from Europe and Developing Countries for sustainable intensification of agriculture, statement.

Submitted input to EC consultation on Science With and For Society, suggesting support for ‘Science with society snowball initiatives that are directly bringing scientists together with society, are interactive, regular and long-term and give the research community the capacity to build their communication activities to the society at large’.

Biotech Week begins today, a weeklong series of events celebrating biotechnology.

New communication adopted on international cooperation for Horizon 2020.

EPSO Draft White Paper: Horticultural Research in Europe – to 2020 and beyond.

J-C Juncker to MEPs ‘A new start for Europe: My agenda for jobs, growth, fairness and democratic change’.

Submission to EC consultation on Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge 2

Action needed to safeguard genetic diversity of the world’s forests.

EPSO Green Paper (November 2013): Horticulture Research in Europe. EPSO Workshop ‘Horticulture for the 21st Century’ was held in 11-12th November 2013 in Berlin, DE.

Science Based Policy

Proposal for an International Society for Plant Molecular Farming – Expression of Interest – deadline 31.7.2013

Plant Sciences for Sustainable Crop Production: Strengthening Partnerships between Europe and Developing Countries. Report joint workshop, April 2013.

Submitting input to the EC’s consultation on Organic Agriculture in Europe

Comment to editorial A Glover: Is there opportunity in risk and uncertainty?

H. Hirt: Science first in GM debate

10.09. 2012 Plant ETP: Statement on New Breeding Technologies

Workshop page on the joint Workshop, Rome, 25-17.6.2012

Statement on agricultural technologies

Europe has an enormous potential and responsibility to be one of the leading science forces globally. There is an urgent need to enable European scientists to join and lead longer term global partnerships. International Cooperation

EPSO statement on Plant breeders’ rights and patent rights