Integrative Research in Environment, Agro-Chains and Technology
Northern region of Portugal has several opportunities and economic potential based in local-economy exploitation, particularly agro-food resources from animal production (meat and milk), vegetables, fruits, olives, nuts to wine and native flora & medicinal plants. The undergoing efforts of UTAD researchers, as well as other´s from public and private institutions of R&D, in the last decades have been fundamental to increment technological value of the region mainly through the development and dissemination of innovation and know-how. The competitiveness of the region has been also accomplished through new methods, technologies and more environmental friendly and efficiently processes. Nonetheless, this achievement implies continuous efforts in research and development; this is always a non-finished work.
Therefore, within the INTERACT global proposal, the research line "Innovation for Sustainable Agro-food Chains" (ISAC) is in articulation with two other lines: "BioEconomy and Sustainability" (BEST) and "Sustainable Viticulture and Wine Production" (VITALITY WINE). The lines described in INTERACT are complementary and do not overlap. In fact, the objective is to increase the production, and products quality (adding commercial value to them) arising from the main crops in the northern region, by developing specific technology (Lines: ISAC & VITALITY WINE), but at the same time by taking profit of the wastes and residual products resulting from the chains of production, exploiting their potential values (and decreasing consequently their negative impact in the environment), which is developed by BEST line. The priority of this line is the need in preserving the sustainability and services of the ecosystems, defining an appropriate management, and these aspects of BEST line are complementary of the previous two lines. Besides, all the lines have in common the challenges that climate changes may bring to the agriculture in this region and the need in disseminating the results to the farmers and stakeholders, and also they have an insight to the possible economic consequences arising from the results obtained.
The INTERACT PROJECT, involving several researchers with complementary expertise, is structured in three Research lines:
» ISAC - Innovation for Sustainable Agro-food Chains
» VITALITY WINE - Sustainable Viticulture and Wine Production
» BEST - BioEconomy and Sustainability