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Using research and innovation to support sustainability across farming systems 

Updated on 01/23/2017
Published on 01/05/2017
Keywords: 3PERF - FOCUS

Both within INRA and outside it, increasing attention is being paid to the farming systems the Institute supports through its research, dissemination and innovation activities and to the partnerships it enters into. In recent years, INRA has greatly increased its number of bilateral and multilateral partnerships with the agricultural world in all its shapes and forms, and deepened exchanges with other stakeholders interested in research on agriculture and food systems. These efforts will continue and will be built upon with other not-for-profit organisations (see #OpenScience). To this end, it is important to build on INRA’s actions in favour of the Institute’s fourfold objectives of increasing its visibility, supporting the missions and work of its staff, developing partnerships and fostering dialogue with society as a whole.

Diversity in the agricultural world is, in itself, a source of sustainable competitiveness for food systems and landscapes. Consequently, INRA works to build broad-based knowledge that can benefit all forms of agriculture, making them more competitive, more natural-resource-efficient, more environmentally responsible and more mindful of human and animal welfare.

 

Sustainable competitiveness

INRA contributes to the competitiveness of agrifood industries and the landscapes where they operate, including peri-urban and urban areas. Competitiveness is key to efforts to reduce the use of natural resources, to protect the environment and for the place of food systems in society to be given due regard by both economic stakeholders, such as farmers and agribusinesses, and by society as a whole. Multicriteria approaches are necessary, given the wide range of agricultural issues and the broad spectrum of stakeholders who often hold conflicting views as to these issues.

 

Farm diversity

There is incredible diversity in agricultural systems and models today. The performance of these systems and models varies widely, a fact likely to continue being true in the future. INRA, through its research and contributions to innovation, seeks to build broad-based knowledge that can benefit all forms of agriculture (improving yields and reducing variability). Diversity in farm systems is also the cornerstone of diversity in agrifood systems and in food and diets, making it possible to meet the varied needs and expectations of local, regional, national, European and international markets, of consumers, of taxpayers and of the public.