- December 8, 2020
- Posted by: EBAN Team
- Category: News
On December 2nd 2020, EBAN hosted a round table to discuss and brainstorm how to design a compelling learning module about Financial Innovation in Agri-food systems. The workshop falls in the framework of AgTech7, an Erasmus+ project aimed at developing a MOOC on farm-to-fork technologies and smart agriculture, including one module on innovative financial instruments to enhance the productivity and resilience of the agricultural sector.
The round table gathered relevant stakeholders in the domain of financing for agriculture, especially targeting policy makers, think thanks and academia, early stage investors and entrepreneurs: the group included the former Minister of Rural Development and Food of Greece, the Senior EU Official for Innovation & Regional Financing, the Director of Advanced Resource Efficiency Centre, the President of Young Entrepreneurs of Thessaloniki as well as representatives of accelerators, venture capitals and family offices from Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. The workshop was highly interactive, and attendees were asked to provide their inputs, questions and comments on each chapter of the module, as well as to contribute their personal knowledge and expertise regarding specific financing schemes and innovative financial instruments that have proven effective in tackling the challenges of the sector.
We discussed about the relevance of blended finance and the role of public institutions in crowding in private investors in the space. We mentioned how the shift of asset management toward sustainable business models and impact investing represents a huge opportunity for the agri-food sector, which policy makers should endorse through incentives for investors and end-users. We mapped the main actors and actor classes investing in the A&F domain and concluded that the complexity of the sector and its critical role for human life necessarily call for collaboration among actors along the chain. Finally, we discussed key technologies for a smart and resilient agriculture, and proven case studies of how innovative tech-enabled ventures can bring about tremendous gains to rural, urban, and industrial communities.
EBAN looks forward to continuing this dive into the financing of agriculture, gaining knowledge from experts and perspective from field operators. If you would like to contribute and get involved, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.