The ambitious project promoted by Valagro with Newlat Food SpA, Azienda Agricola Aureli, Pescaradolc, AGIRE scarl and the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa, financed by the Abruzzo Region as part of the Abruzzo ROP ERDF 2014–2020, to promote the quality and sustainability of Abruzzo’s agri-food system, has been successfully concluded.
It’s called INNOPAQ – Innovazione Sostenibile per le Produzioni Agroalimentari di Qualità (Sustainable Innovation for Quality Agri-food Production) – the project promoted and implemented by a number of well-established players in the Abruzzo (Italy) agri-food sector. These include Valagro, project leader, a leading company in the production and marketing of biostimulants and and specialty nutrients for crops, Newlat Food SpA, a multinational company that owns Delverde pasta among others, Azienda Agricola Aureli, a leading company in the production of ingredients and vegetables for the industry, Pescaradolc, owner of Dolciaria Falcone, and the AGIRE consortium company (Agroindustry, Research, Eco-sustainability), which manages the Agri-food Innovation Hub for the Abruzzo region. Last but not least, the project saw the collaboration of a leading scientific partner at the national level and beyond, i.e. the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa.
Three years after its launch, the project – which was financed by the Abruzzo region as part of the ROP ERDF 2014–2020 – has come to an end with results in line with its objectives, in particular, that of testing a model of collaboration between companies operating in the agri-food sector in Abruzzo and complementary to each other, focusing on innovation and sustainability to increase the quality of the products in the supply chain, to the advantage of the competitiveness of the regional agri-food sector.
With this aim, the Innopaq project aimed at enhancing Valagro’s know-how in the development and production of biostimulants (solutions for sustainable crop nutrition), in order to increase yields and improve the nutritional characteristics of vegetable and cereal crops typical of the region, such as those supplied by the Aureli farm: the aim was to obtain vegetables and derivatives with a high health value in a sustainable way, thanks to a more efficient use of water. Characteristics evaluated by the Aureli company in collaboration with the Sapienza University of Rome. These excellent raw materials were then used in the research and development process of innovative products in the sector of pasta and confectionery products, respectively by Newlat Food SpA and Pescaradolc, in order to expand their respective market segments. These activities were carried out in close collaboration with the PlantLab of the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa, which has been engaged in characterisation analyses of Valagro biostimulants using cutting-edge research approaches, and with the AGIRE Innovation Hub, which facilitated the transfer of the Innopaq project model, facilitating the placement of researchers in regional companies operating in the wine, horticulture, oil and poultry sectors, with the aim of carrying out research and development activities.