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HELPFOOD 4.0: Food ecosystem scalability


Determinating the shelf life os fresh fruit and vegetables

Monitoring the conditions of fresh fruit and vegetables

Translation storage conditions in the supply chain into remaining shelf life

HelpFood 4.0 aims to test and demonstrate the importance of designing and supporting social infrastructures to make food circular sustainability more practicable by scaling up and replicating the socio-digital innovation experimented into other RIS countries (Italy, Spain, Portugal). The project explores the role of food as an element of reconnection between farmers, citizens and “eaters” (i.e. citizens more aware of sustainable food issues) through the promotion of Community-Supported Agriculture models as sustainable examples of production, distribution, and consumption of food.

The shortening of the supply chain could be a solution to improve the economic, social and environmental sustainability of the food supply chain. To promote these changes, it is necessary to work with a multiscale and multilevel approach. The project promotes the sustainability of high-quality food along the food value chain due to cooperation between research organizations and farmers and the promotion of short supply chains. The empowerment of eaters will be pursued by providing information on geographical traceability and nutritional information, with the development of an IT tool allowing eaters to directly visualize the origin of ingredients to be implemented in food labelling.

The project starts from the empirical research developed during the pilot project HelpFood in 2021 and foreseen the scaling up and replication of the socio-technical innovation experimented in other RIS countries.


  • Enhance the competitiveness of the local ecosystems by identifying new production and market opportunities, with increased returns for the companies as already demonstrated by the EU Geographical Indications’ system.

  • Support innovative value chain design that will improve the competitiveness of small-scale farmers and local distributors.

  • Optimize the local Agrifood supply chain with new digital functionalities and service.

  • Increase citizens’ awareness and understanding of the benefits provided by alternative food systems.
  • Improve the economical sustainability of local farmers and export the CSA model in other RIS countries.

  • Measure and monitor well-being and progress using both quantitative and qualitative research methods and techniques.

  • Engage local policymakers to make the distribution model more systemic.


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Status: Active

Financing program: EIT Food Program financed by the European Union

Contract nº: –

Duration: March 1, 2022 – December 31, 2022 (10 months)

Budget: 398.225€