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COVID-19

Europe’s food system has come under unprecedented pressure during the COVID-19 pandemic that requires an urgent and coordinated response. As Europe’s leading food innovation initiative, EIT Food has launched two initiatives to support the agrifood sector in its time of need.

Europe’s food system has come under unprecedented pressure during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has required an urgent and coordinated response. As Europe’s leading food innovation initiative, EIT Food launched two initiatives to support the agrifood sector in its time of need.

As part of the EIT’s Crisis Response Initiative, these activities directly contribute to the European Union’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2020, EIT Food launched two funding opportunities to support the European agrifood sector through the COVID-19 crisis:

  1. COVID-19 Bridge Fund – the aim of this Call was to support startups and scaleups with high-impact and growth potential that have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic;
  2. COVID-19 Rapid Response Call for Innovation projects – the aim of this Call was to help accelerate impactful projects that address business and consumer needs throughout the food system in Europe

EIT unlocked 60 million euros to support its Crisis Response Initiative. After evaluation of the submitted Call for Proposals by the EIT Governing Board, EIT Food was awarded 10.25 million euros.

EIT Food COVID-19 funding has directly supported the growth of 13 innovative agrifood startups and resulted in the launch of products and services from eight innovation projects to market by the end of 2021. The investments were part of the EIT’s Crisis Response Initiative, which directly contributed to the European Union’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The growth and innovations developed are helping to support recovery from the pandemic by providing bridge funding for startups and scaleups adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic, and by funding innovations addressing needs related to improving nutrition, supply chain disruption and food safety risks. 

COVID-19 Rapid Response Innovation

As a part of EIT's Crisis Response, this initiative funded high-impact innovative activities until 31 December 2020.

COVID-19 Bridge Fund

The COVID-19 Bridge Fund supported European agrifood startups that were affected by coronavirus, as part of the EIT Crisis Response Initiative.

project
The CovidX project investigated whether a food supplement based on a novel Spirulina-extract has the ability to strengthen the immune system and help reduce infection risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

SPIN

2020
project
This project is developing a nutritional supplement to support the immune system in the fight against infection by SARS-CoV-2
project
This project will implement dynamic pricing technology to reduce food waste by up to 40%, ensure a smoother supply chain of perishable goods and bring fairer prices to customers
project
COVID-19 BEAMitup will develop a diagnostic tool to improve on-site testing capacities of surfaces for the food industries to detect contamination or absence thereof, contributing to the security and resilience of the European agrifood…

The impact of Covid-19 on consumer food habits and the agrifood sector

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project
The CovidX project investigated whether a food supplement based on a novel Spirulina-extract has the ability to strengthen the immune system and help reduce infection risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

SPIN

2020
project
This project is developing a nutritional supplement to support the immune system in the fight against infection by SARS-CoV-2
project
This project will implement dynamic pricing technology to reduce food waste by up to 40%, ensure a smoother supply chain of perishable goods and bring fairer prices to customers
project
COVID-19 BEAMitup will develop a diagnostic tool to improve on-site testing capacities of surfaces for the food industries to detect contamination or absence thereof, contributing to the security and resilience of the European agrifood…
project
COVICOAT aims to develop an edible antiviral coating for fresh fruits and vegetables and assess its performance in a real scenario
project
This project will conduct research at hospitals in Italy and Germany into whether deficiencies in micronutrients such as zinc, selenium and vitamin D have a correlation with the severity of disease in COVID-19 patients
project
Robin Food includes vulnerable groups in the revalorisation of extra leftovers in the food chain
blog
Food Tank President, Dani Nierenberg, sat down with Giuseppe Scionti, Novameat CEO and animal tissue engineering expert, to talk about the post-pandemic future of alternative meat.