Sustainable and Responsible Food Province - SeAMK Projects

Sustainable and Responsible Food Province

Key Information about the Project

The Sustainable and Responsible Food Province project strengthens and substantiates the sustainability efforts in the food system in South Ostrobothnia. The project focuses on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and negative environmental impacts in the industry by offering and developing various tools for businesses and piloting them. Simultaneously, it promotes climate change adaptation and risk prevention in the region’s food system. The project is implemented in collaboration with five partner organizations whose researchers have expertise in climate and sustainability work within the food industry from various perspectives.

Network Collaboration

The project creates a regional network based on the cooperation of partner organizations. This network promotes the reduction of climate emissions and negative environmental impacts of companies within the food supply chain, as well as sustainability efforts. The network monitors the implementation of South Ostrobothnia’s Food sector’s Climate Roadmap and facilitates the development of the region’s food system’s climate change adaptation strategy. Based on existing good practices, information is provided to the pilots, which aim to find new solutions or approaches for advancing low-carbon work. The network fosters information flow within the food system among different stakeholders and sectors. In addition to the pilots, support is provided for companies in building their sustainability strategies based on emerging needs. The project supports SeAMK and partner organizations in their climate work and measures promoting overall sustainability through education and R&D activities.


In the project’s activities, local, regional, national, and international best practices in sustainability and responsibility work are identified and shared with the pilots and stakeholders. Through the pilots carried out by partner organizations, practical methods for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, advancing sustainability work, and adapting to climate change are tested. In addition to the pilots, support is provided to organizations in developing their sustainability strategies according to emerging needs.

The project’s measures are divided as follows:

  • Sustainability work coordination and strengthening cross-sectoral collaboration
  • Developing a regional strategy for climate change adaptation in the food system.
  • Utilizing existing practices
  • Pilots
    • Primary production (utilization of biochar)
    • Food industry (by-products)
    • Catering services
    • Consumers
  • Communication and making climate work visible

Integration with Regional Strategies

The project is closely linked to the strategic development of Food Province and the implementation of the Food Province strategy. It adds a new dimension within South Ostrobothnia’s Food Province brand, particularly focused on climate change mitigation and adaptation. In the long term, this enhances the competitiveness of the region’s food industry and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

The project interfaces with projects promoting circular economy and several projects addressing sustainability and responsibility issues within the food system, from primary production to food waste. The project promotes the integration of food into the circular economy system, deepening the traditional “farm to table” concept and seeing food as part of an economic system where energy is renewable, nutrients circulate, by-products are utilized extensively as high-value products, and waste is minimized.

Expert Consortium

The project is coordinated by Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences, and it involves a broad expert consortium:

  • Innovation Studies Group (ISG) within the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Tampere, which is part of the Research Center for Knowledge, Science, Technology, and Innovation (TaSTI).
  • Ruralia Institute at the University of Helsinki, focusing on promoting sustainable local development and bioeconomy in rural areas through multidisciplinary research and related innovation and education.
  • The Food Research Division at the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), which emphasizes the comprehensive and maximal utilization of raw materials from primary production in different product types, following the waste hierarchy whenever possible.
  • The project leverages the strong expertise of the University of Vaasa in consumer research and strategic management.

Basic Project Information

Duration: September 1, 2023 – August 31, 2025

Funding: Approximately €720,000

Funder: European Regional Development Fund (EAKR)



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Kaisa Mäkelä






Vaaleahiuksinen henkilö seisoo kädet puuskassa.

Anu Palomäki

Project Manager and Project Portfolio Coordinator