The second Societal Challenge covers the following thematic areas:
1. Sustainable Agriculture and Forestry
A sufficient supply of food and other bio-based raw materials shall be ensured by increasing productivity and resource efficiency in agriculture and forestry. Other important aspects are the mitigation of climate change and the strengthening of economic players in rural areas.
2. Sustainable and Competitive Agri-food Sector for a Safe and Healthy Diet
Aims of these activities are a sustainable production of safe and healthy foods and better informed consumer choices. Allocation of resources, by-products and green-house gases shall be reduced while increasing the competitiveness of food industry.
3. Unlocking the Potential of Aquatic Living Resources
Activities shall focus on developing sustainable, environmentally friendly and at the same time globally competitive fisheries and aquacultures and on boosting marine and maritime innovation through biotechnology to fuel smart "blue" growth. The sustainable use of marine and aquatic resources shall contribute to safeguarding food supply.
4. Sustainable and Competitive Bio-based Industries and Supporting the Development of a European Bio-economy
Activities comprise optimising the use of biomass from primary production including residues, biowaste and bio-based industry by-products. Conventional industrial shall be transformed transforming into bio-based resource and energy efficient ones. Supporting standardisation and certification systems, regulatory and demonstration/field trial activities and others shall open new markets.
5. Cross-cutting Marine and Maritime Research
The aim is to unlock the potential of seas and oceans by a better use of marine resources and different sources of marine energy, as well as the wide range of other uses that is made of the seas, while protecting the environment and adapting to climate change. Due to the multidisciplinary nature of marine and maritime research, close coordination and joint activities with other parts of Horizon 2020, especially Societal Challenge 5, will be pursued.
6. Specific Implementation Actions
Consultations, e.g. of the Standing Committee on Agricultural Research (SCAR) and establishment of links with the actions of relevant European Innovation Partnerships and the relevant aspects of the research and innovation agendas of European Technology Platforms. Knowledge exchange of the different stakeholders and dissemination of research results; specific support measures for SME and other innovation actors of the primary production sector. Support to standardisation and regulatory aspects to help accelerate market deployment for novel bio-based goods and services. Support for relevant Joint Programming Initiatives (JPIs) and relevant public-private partnerships and synergies of other Union programmes such as the Rural Development Funds and Fisheries Funds. Development of a European bio-economy observatory.
More detailed information on the individual areas can be found in the Specific Programme of Horizon 2020.