AssoBio joins the Sanatech event “The future of European agriculture will be organic”

14 May 2021

Synergies across the production chain, traceability and eco-sustainable packaging are the priorities in line with the European Commission, according to president Roberto Zanoni. “Investing in blockchain technology and consumer incentives: now the government must do its part” 

Supporting the production chains in the organic sector, promoting virtuous technological innovation, ensuring product traceability and developing sustainable packaging are the objectives that have been set by AssoBio as it takes part in the Sanatech project, the new international event for the organic and natural production chain, scheduled to take place from 9 to 12 September at BolognaFiere during the 33rd edition of SANA. 

SANA, the international event dedicated to the organic and natural sector, will this year be expanded to also host Sanatech, a new meeting place for professional operators already involved, or interested, in adopting organic methods. The event will give visibility to all of the links in the chain “from producer to consumer”, reiterating the spirit that the European Green Deal has transformed into a genuine programme through the “From farm to fork” plan for the 27 member states. 

Headed by Roberto Zanoni, AssoBio, the national association of businesses involved in the transformation and distribution of organic products, will serve on the advisory board to ensure the relevance of the programme. “As a fair event, Sanatech is the missing link in the chain. It will provide a broad overview of the entire productive process for the organic sector, which is essential in order to achieve the European Commission’s targets for protecting the environment and biodiversity,” claimed the president of the business association. 

Organized by BolognaFiere, FederBio and Avenue Media, Sanatech will pre-empt the responses to the needs of a sector that is about to see a rapid increase in land coverage – up to 25% of agricultural land in Europe by 2030, according to the goals set by the European Commission. The event will flank investors, businesspeople and operators committed to integrating the organic method into their agri-food production chains, in every cluster and sector, from seeds to Grocery Retail, from mulching to the protection of weeds, all the way to the techniques for traceability and packaging, placing innovation at centre stage. 

Technology based on drones, sensors, robots, blockchain and bio-plastic materials will be key to a rationalisation of productive activities that can combine environmental balance, productive efficiency and food safety, in what promises to be “an exhibition of the European Green Deal”. 

“The future of organic production does not consist of an improbable return to the past, but in continuous innovation across all of the phases of production,” observes Zanoni. “The topic of traceability that Sanatech will examine is of great interest for AssoBio, which has proposed the creation of a blockchain platform validated by the Ministry for Agricultural Policy and shared by all of the operators in the organic sector, to ensure transparency all the way from the field to the table. Each ring in the production chain should follow the same logic and for this reason Sanatech will also be examining sustainable packaging for every type of product, from agri-food to cosmetics. These are aspects that conscious consumers are paying increasing attention to and the commitment of the producers should not be undermined by incompatible forms of distribution, transformation, energy supply, water supply and transport of the raw materials.” 

Organized as part of SANA, the international exhibition and conference for natural and organic products, which is in its 33rd edition, Sanatech will have an exhibition area integrated into pavilion 37, but will extend also beyond the days of the event throughout the year with the technical demonstration days “Sanatech in tour”, open to the public in various regions at production sites and field trials. 

“Communication is central for educating the public properly about organic issues and we wish Sanatech every success,” concludes Zanoni. “Annual consumption of organic food in Italy is just 60 euros per capita, which is very low compared with our European neighbours like France (174 euros) and Germany (144 euros): an increase in consumption is essential to ensure the right price for farmers, favouring economies of scale and a competitive final price. The European Commission, in fact, has requested that all European citizens can rely on healthy, economically accessible and sustainable foods: this is the priority for the sector in Italy and AssoBio is reviving its appeal to the government to introduce a tax credit to reduce the costs of organic certifications, which can reverberate up to three times across the length of the production chain, and at the same time to reduce VAT on organic fruit and vegetable products.” 

The main themes concerning sustainable packaging will be tackled by Sanatech with specific in-depth conventions created during the event, one dedicated to organic food products, in collaboration with AssoBio and the other for organic and natural cosmetics, in collaboration with COSMETICA ITALIA. 


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Isabella Bonvicini
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