FUTURE PROOFED CROPS
Christine Raines, Andreas Weber, Francesco Loreto, Philippe Nacry, René Klein Lankhorst
Our climate is changing and the world population is growing to an estimated 10 billion people by 2050. This will cause serious problems in global food supply, for environment sustainability and safeguarding Earth’s biodiversity. To overcome these challenges, agriculture will have to adapt and a key element in this will be the development of “future-proof” crops. These crops will not only have to be high-yielding and providing high-quality products, but should also be able to withstand future climate conditions, make efficient use of scarce resources such as water and minerals, and sustainably self-defend against abiotic and biotic stresses. Future crops should also support the circular bio-based economy and contribute to mitigating the biodiversity crisis and reducing atmospheric CO2 concentration.
The WG “Future proofed crops” will support the delivery of high yielding, resilient European crops fit for climatological, environmental, and societal constraints. Our major focus is on developing crops that have a more efficient photosynthesis, that can resist to abiotic stress to avoid nutrient and/or water limitation of CO2 fixation and that have an optimizing resource use efficiency. We acknowledge that future-proofed crops will have to be grown in a sustainable agricultural system that takes into account Earth’s capacities. Therefore, this WG will actively engage with other entities involved in, for instance, protection against future pests and diseases (EPSO Plant Health WG), plants and microbiome interaction (EPSO MiBi WG), nutritional security (EPSO WG NS), agricultural technologies (EPSO AgT WG), adaptation of agronomy and cultivation/production systems, agro-ecology, and development of future post-harvest processing and food production.
We also have a clear focus on future proofing crops for non-food purposes. The main drivers behind this aspect are increasing the photosynthetic sink of CO2 for climate change mitigation, and supporting a global shift from a fossil based economy towards a biobased economy.
The WG will form a platform for European scientists to cooperate and exchange information about future proofing European crops. We have a clear focus on developing practical measures for crop improvement which will require a close cooperation with the breeding industry, farmers and other stakeholders in plant-based value chains. Industrial parties therefore are explicitly welcomed as observers of our working group.
Furthermore, this WG will advise the European Commission and other European bodies in matters pertaining to the design and implementation of future crops. Also, we will stimulate research cooperation at the European level and leverage funding for scientific research in the field of future proofing crops.
This WG evolved from the Horizon 2020 funded ‘CropBooster-P’ (1.11.2018 – 30.4.2022) Coordination and Support Action developing a roadmap for boosting global crop yield for food and nutritional security and to fuel the bioeconomy.
The first meeting took place online on 13th July 2023. Please contact the chairs via epso(at)epsomail.org if you are interested in attending future meetings.
EPSO news developed by this WG:
National funders in the European Research Area Network on Sustainable Crop Production (SusCrop ERA-net) together with experts from science and stakeholders developed (supported by 2 workshops) the white paper on ‘Future Research Needs in Sustainable...
EPSO 1st Workshop on Future Proofed Crops online on 13th July 2023 – registration deadline 30th April
The EPSO Working Group on Future Proofed Crops is pleased to announce that its first workshop will take place online on 13 July 2023. This first workshop has three aims. Firstly, we will hear brief introductions from each participant to become familiar with each other...
Contributions from plant research & innovation on the past, present & future of the European Research & Innovation Framework Programmes 2014-2027
EPSO welcomes the European Commission consultation and provides input on the achievements and suggests where improve Horizon Europe and the next Framework Programme (FP) to have a higher impact. The European Research and Innovation FPs are crucial to enable...
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Alessandro Alboresi, Univ. Padova, IT
Juan Arellano, IRNASA-CSIC, ES
Alexandra Baekelandt, VIB-UGent, BE
Etienne Bucher, Agroscope, CH
Francesca Cardinale, Univ Torino, IT
Camila Caldana, MPIMP, DE
Anders Carlsson, SLU, SE
Siri Caspersen, SLU, SE
Amanda Cavanagh, Univ. Essex, UK
Gabriella Consonni, Univ. Milano, IT
Evelyne Costes, INRAE, FR
Manuela Dahinden, ETH Zurich, CH
Pingtao Ding, Univ. Leiden, NL
Åshild Ergon, NMBU, NO
Alisdair Fernie, MPIMP, DE
Alain Gojon, INRAE, FR
Thorsten Hamann, NTNU, NO
Rob Hancock, Hutton, UK
Mats Hansson, Univ. Lund, SE
Jeremy Harbinson, WUR, NL
Liina Jakobson, METK, EE
Hamid Khazaei, LUKE, FI
René Klein Lankhorst, WUR, NL
Lorenz Kottmann, JKI, DE
Tracy Lawson, Univ. Essex, UK
Francesco Loreto, CNR , IT
Fatemeh Maghuly, BOKU, AT
Celine Masclaux-Daubresse, INRAE, FR
Karin Metzlaff, EPSO
Rosa Morcuende, IRNASA-CSIC, ES
Tomas Morosinotto, Univ. Padova, IT
Philippe Nacry, INRAE, FR
Sonia Negrao, UCD, IE
Pablo Pulido, CNB-CSIC , ES
Christine Raines, Univ. Essex, UK
Odd-Arne Rognli, NMBU, NO
Nelson Saibo, ITQB, PT
Giedre Samuoliene, LAMMC, LT
Angelo Santino, ISPA-CNR, IT
Stefan Schillberg IME Fraunhofer,DE
Andrea Schubert, UNITO, IT
Ingo Schubert, IPK, DE
Andrew Simkin, Univ. Essex , UK
Rüdiger Simon, Univ. Dusseldorf, DE
Vita Tilvikiene, LAMMC, LT
Szilvia Toth, BRC, HU
Tracy Valentine, Hutton, UK
Frank Van Breusegem, VIB-UGent, BE
Olivier Van Aken, Univ. Lund, SE
Guido van den Ackerveken, Univ. Utrecht, NL
Carlota Vaz Patto, ITQB, PT
Ruben Vicente, ITQB, PT
Sirja Viitala, LUKE, FI
Ralf Wilhelm, JKI, DE
Jian Xu, Univ. Radboud, NL
Samuel Zeeman, ETH, CH
Amrit Nanda, Plant ETP, BE
Michael Hodges, Paris-Saclay, FR
Shyam Pariyar, Univ. Bonn, DE
Michael Selvaraj, CGIAR,
Nick Vangheluwe, Euroseeds, BE