Vidzeme is the northern region of Latvia. Territorially it is the largest region in the country, occupying 30,6% of the territory. Vidzeme is the European Union’s border region. The borders with two countries – Estonia and Russia – are the advantage of the region. It is the least populated region of Latvia – 278 000 or 14.7 % of the total population. The region has the lowest density in the country – 14.1 people/km2 (LV average – 30). Key industries of Vidzeme are – dairy, forestry, wood processing, metalworking, chemical industry, ICT, tourism, creative industries.
Vidzeme living lab. Short description
Latvian pilot will tackle the existing challenges in the REGIONAL FOOD SUPPLY SYSTEM in the territory of the Vidzeme Planning Region. It will identify the best ways to establish and maintain a sustainable and resilient regional food system and to strengthen ties among all food chain stakeholders (producers, processors, traders, logistic enterprises, catering services providers etc.). Especially between producers, processors and consumers – to develop, implement and strengthen sustainable and resilient short food supply chains.
The aim of pilot is to analyse the food flows, good practices and problems in the provision of locally produced food raw materials and products and to seek, develop and offer solutions on how to organize catering services in municipal institutions financially efficiently and as easily as possible using locally produced food (self-catering or purchased catering services).
Main objectives and tasks for the partners of the Vidzeme pilot are:
- To engage local society, communities, organizations and companies in identifying their needs and abilities towards a sustainable and resilient food system.
- Identify good practices and challenges regionally, nationally, and internationally for the development of efficiently functioning regional food systems and short food chains.
- To develop and test new methods and tools for establishing and strengthening resilient regional food systems and short food supply chains in close cooperation with local communities and municipalities.
- To mainstream FOOD2030 framework interests into national, regional and local strategies, plans, initiatives, and actions.
Possible solutions within the CITIES2030
- Green public procurement adapted to needs of sustainable and resilient regional food chains (already on national and EU political agenda; provided financial support within EAFRD LEADER programme).
- Smart villages and towns – local initiatives facilitating the development of short food supply chains, diverse forms of cooperation and positive changes in inhabitants/consumers consumption behaviour.
- Public –private partnerships creating favourable preconditions for existing and appearing food chains in the regions.
- Promoting development and introduction of innovative/new business models, production, storage, and delivery solutions based on territorial uniqueness.
Others to be identified within the implementation of the project.
The synergy between the partners Vidzeme Planning Region (P24) and Latvian Rural Forum (P25) is based on the common understanding that each partner provides the available resources and expertise for the Cities2030 implementation. Project activities directly related to the support of the pilot area – Vidzeme Planning Region – are mutually coordinated:
- Vidzeme Planning region (VPR, P24) ensures engagement of inhabitants and local municipalities in identifying most relevant challenges of the regional food system to be addressed and to pilot the solutions with target groups. Working towards improvement of policies, strategies, action plans and regulations regionally and nationally. More info about VPR: http://www.vidzeme.lv/en/about_vidzeme
- Latvian Rural Forum (LLF, P25) works with public private partnerships, local producers, local communities and initiatives. Recommendations for policy framework and implementation methods for green activities (in a context of sustainable food) within RDP and EAFRD LEADER.