3 June 2024 News

Geographical Indications’ contribution to smart territorial development and sustainability: GI-SMART kicks off!

We are thrilled to announce that, for the next 4 years, AREPO will be actively involved in a groundbreaking project aimed at investigating the impacts of Geographical Indications (GIs) in terms of sustainability and their contribution to sustainable development.

The project, titled GI-SMART, has been selected under the Horizon Europe call “HORIZON-CL6-2023-COMMUNITIES: Investigating the contribution of geographical indications (GIs) to sustainable development and optimizing support for newly established schemes”.

The project officially began on June 1st and it will have a total budget of € 2,554,531.67.

Project Objectives and Expected Key Results

The main objective of the project is to enhance the design and implementation of the GI system to support sustainable agriculture, healthy and sustainable food, and sustainable food systems, in line with the objectives of the Farm to Fork strategy. To achieve this, the project will:

  • Map and integrate existing research knowledge on GIs sustainability and their new challenges;
  • Build a reproducible and comprehensive quantitative assessment method of sustainable GIs (under environmental, social, economic and governance dimension);
  • Identify and map good practices to enhance GI sustainability;
  • Explore and benchmark the approaches/policies across Member States;
  • Analyse and improve understanding of GI sustainable deliverables by local and global consumers;
  • Formulate policy recommendations, decision tools and best practices for policymakers and producers to enhance GI sustainability;
  • Create a GI Smart community platform for communication, dissemination and exploitation of project results and stakeholder engagement.

The work carried out during this 4-years project will lead to the delivery of a set of policy recommendations and three strategic guides:

1. Guide for GIs producer groups, collecting effective sustainability practices and pathways, aiming at improving the contribution of GIs to economic, environmental, and social sustainability;

2. Guide for policymakers aiming at creating a policy environment to support GI stakeholders in improving sustainability (from local, regional, national to EU level);

3. Guide for improved marketing of GIs for producer groups and other relevant stakeholders.

GI Smart Consortium and Partners

AREPO will be an active member of a consortium made up of 17 public and private partners from 8 European Member States (France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Spain), from UK and Switzerland. It will be coordinated by INRAE – National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (France) and it will also include several members of AREPO’s Scientific Council and previous partners of the H2020 Project Strength2food.

AREPO’s Role

AREPO will play a role in many of the research activities envisaged by the project and will assist other partners in their tasks.  

In particular, AREPO will be Work Package Leader for Communication, Dissemination, Exploitation, and Stakeholder Engagement, in collaboration with Euromontana, to ensure the uptake of the scientific research by GI producers as well as public administrations (regional, national and EU).

GI Smart Community Platform

Stakeholder engagement will be realised through the creation of a multi-actor platform at national and EU level including producers, consumers, control bodies, regional and national authorities. It will help in creating knowledge exchange between different stakeholders across the EU and in collecting feedback and input on project activities (e.g. validation of conceptual and analytical framework; feedback on definition of methodology; discussion of the results of research; validation of policy recommendation; disseminate project results and strategic guidelines).

Project partners will meet in Paris after summer for the kick off meeting. Stay tuned!