The partners of eTOMATO believe that at the very basis of a successful project lies its capability to understand the scenario of their operational work, and to efficiently undertake actions within it.
eTOMATO has been inspired by the recent matters of “KM O”, or Short Food Supply Chains (SFSCs). This concept helps understaning surely why Multifunctional Agriculture is important to those new farmers who cannot afford to place all their eggs in the basket of commodities’ market, on which no certain or fixed revenue, can be counted on.
The topics of SFSCs have recently received attention from both international and regional/local bodies inside the EU. It has been indeed the attention casted by publications of, for example, the EIP AGRI like this one to prompt regional legislation of being created and entering into effect. Apulia, the region where the lead eTOMATO coordinator UNIFG is based, has recently approved a regional law on the definition and use of SFSC, as this being an opportunity of strengthening local economy and improving consumers’ health (Here the link – Italian).
Not only eTOMATO partnership was built with the intent of hearing the important topics being raised from the actors of rural economy on SFSCs, but also that through its actions the project can contribute to the shaping of the rural scenario on these needs. One must in fact think that such regional law in Apulia had been created because of the influence that other european projects have been able to allocate on regional politics, and the evidence that such needs were necessary to be addressed emerging from those.
It is not always straightforward, or easy to state that legislative actions are bottom-up or top-down, but in eTOMATO we believe that projects dealing with stakeholders of rural economies, whether farmers, policy makers or academia, should be linking all these actors together: as to facilitate their communication for a sane and sustainable shaping of the agricultural scenario and the challenges it imposes to us today.