The seminar was held in the beautiful surroundings of the Labour Museum Werstas. The event included two panel discussions, a presentation about sustainability reporting and the launch of the KiertoaSuomesta.fi, CircularFinland.fi digital marketplace.
The first panel discussion was about circular economy solutions for agriculture. Seven panelists were present from different backgrounds: mainly experts from agriculture, forestry, and industry sector. The discussion was fruitful, several perspectives to circular economy were brought up. Nutrient cycling, biobased side streams, biogas, logistics, and business opportunities to rural areas were the main themes of the discussion.
After the first panel discussion, two specialists from MTK gave a brief presentation about sustainability reporting related to the food chain. Their speech was a good addition to previous discussion on the developing operation environment of agriculture. The presentation gave an overview of current regulations and future expectations from the EU and the state in the coming years.
The opportunities of data economy were the focus of the second panel discussion. Five panelists had diverse backgrounds in data economy, from educational institutions to companies operating in the data industry. Different possibilities of data to agriculture and food chain in larger extent were discussed and good ideas were brought up to enhance the data industry. Specialists highlighted the need to process data to be able to better utilize it – which has a lot of unexploited potential. The role of consumers was also discussed, they were seen as an important enabler and driver of the development of the food supply chain.
A new digital marketplace, CircularFinland (www.KiertoaSuomesta.fi), was launched in the event. The marketplace is a service to both sell and buy biobased side streams from primary production and the food industry (e.g. manure, grass, crop residues). ”We have tried to make the platform as simple and easy to use as possible,” said Riina Kärki, project manager of the TREASoURcE project. The new service was a topic of discussion at the event, many participants commented that this type of service is needed to boost material cycles.
Atmosphere in the event was very positive, over 40 participants came in person and over 70 followed remotely. Participants were excited about the event; the somewhat unusual seminar structure got a lot of good feedback. ”We had a great range of professional panelists and presenters from a variety of backgrounds. The event focused on the food chain, so it was a great bonus that most of the people on stage also had a background in farming themselves,” said project specialist Nora Berglund.