ENSA, Starch Europe, Euvepro contribution to the public consultation on the review of the EU Agricultural Promotion Policy

The European Plant-Based Food Association (ENSA), Euvepro and Starch Europe welcome the opportunity to contribute to the public consultation on the EU promotion policy inside and outside the EU.

We strongly support the European Commission’s ambition of encouraging more sustainable diets, as echoed in the Farm to Fork Strategy. To enable this transition, we believe that the eligibility criteria of the promotion programmes, as outlined in Regulation (EU) 1144/2014, should be reviewed to ensure that the promotion policy targets sustainably produced foods, including finished plant-based food products made from EU crops.

More specifically, widening the scope of the promotion programme to plant-based foods would:
• Encourage plant-based food production and subsequently provide European farmers with new and viable economic opportunities, hence supporting them in driving the sustainability of the agri-food chain. The economic potential of EU-grown plant-based proteins, nuts and cereals for European farmers is outlined in the European Commission’s Plant Protein Plan, which highlights the double-digit annual growth rate of plant-based proteins on the food market. Certain EU Member States have already displayed efforts to build plant-based protein self-sufficiency. France, for instance, allocated EUR 100 million to develop its production of protein-rich crops, as part of its recovery strategy plan. Additionally, the Belgian Walloon region is in the process of launching a start-up that will extract protein from plants for use in plant-based meat alternatives.
• Contribute to the sustainability of the food system and halting biodiversity loss. As recognised in the Farm to Fork Strategy and Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan, plant-based diets including products from plant-sources such as oat, pea, almond have a key role to play in sustainable agriculture and food policy.
• Ensure consistency with evolving dietary habits, as consumers are increasingly turning towards plant-based foods out of environmental, health and/or ethical concerns. It would empower consumers to make informed choices by providing them with a more exhaustive picture of the marketplace, thereby also ensuring a level playing field amongst food producers.
• Foster innovation in the value chain, hence enhancing the competitiveness of the EU farming sector while delivering sustainably produced food products.

Embracing the potential of sustainable food is now more than ever crucial to make the EU agri-food systems more resilient and enable a post-COVID19 green recovery. Putting a greater focus on sustainability as a central standard of EU quality can equally bring a competitive advantage. To foster sustainable food production and consumption, we therefore call on the Commission to:
• Target, via its promotion policy, sustainably produced foods that contribute to a balanced, healthy and sustainable diet. The communication of selected projects should emphasise the environmental benefits of the agri-food ingredient/product it targets as contributing to the seal of EU quality and avoid general statements that characterise entire food groups, irrespective of their contribution to sustainable food production and consumption.
• Extend the EU promotion programmes to a wider variety of sustainably produced foods, including finished plant-based foods made from EU crops.

About ENSA

The European Plant-based Foods Association (ENSA) represents the interests of plant-based food manufacturers in Europe. ENSA is an association of internationally operating companies, ranging from large corporations to small, family-owned businesses with an annual turnover of over €1 billion. ENSA members produce high-quality plant-based alternatives to dairy and meat products. Since its establishment in 2003, ENSA has been raising awareness about the role of plant-based diet in moving towards more sustainable and healthier food consumption patterns.

About Starch Europe

The European Starch Industry Association, Starch Europe, represents the EU starch industry both at European and international level. Its membership comprises 28 EU starch producing companies, together representing more than 95% of the EU starch industry, and, in associate membership, 6 national starch industry associations. A crucial link between farm and fork, the European starch industry produces more than 15 million tonnes of high-quality ingredients, including starches and starch-derivatives, plant-based proteins and fibres, from its 75 starch production facilities in 19 EU Member States. This is extracted from over 24 million tonnes of primarily EU grown wheat, maize and starch potatoes, and serves a wide customer-base in both food, feed and industrial sectors. Through decades of constant innovation, and the incredible versatility of starch, the European starch industry is today seen as a pioneer in the European Bioeconomy, and as a zero-waste industry making full use of every part of the agricultural raw materials used, is an essential actor driving sustainability across the agri-food value chain.


EUVEPRO is the European Vegetable Protein Association, representing the interests of manufacturers of plant-based proteins for human consumption in Europe. Founded in 1977, EUVEPRO’s membership is composed of processing companies that deliver high quality plant protein ingredients. EUVEPRO promotes innovation and the role & benefits of these ingredients as part of a healthy diet.