Food4CE Knowledge Transfer Platform and Matchmaking Platform will facilitate the creation of a unique mutual support network for AFNs in Central Europe

Date: 16.02.2024

Food4CE is a European project aimed at supporting Alternative Food Networks (AFNs) in their efforts to create sustainable and resilient food supply system. To address these challenges Food4CE will establish national and translational innovation hubs, which will focus on advancing AFNs logistics efficiency through the development of innovative tools and solutions, namely the Knowledge Transfer Platform and the Matchmaking Platform. The aim of both platforms is to facilitate knowledge transfer and business practice exchange between different actors and regions to further facilitate the creation of a unique mutual support network for AFNs in Central Europe.

The Knowledge Transfer Platform (KTP)

The aim of the KTP is to effectively gather and disseminate information collected by project Food4CE to Alternative Food Networks (AFNs), logistic providers, and other relevant stakeholders (e.g. intermediaries, chambers of commerce, etc).

The platform will thus encourage the exchange of best practices and knowledge concerning logistics between relevant stakeholders in the specific countries, but also in the whole Central Europe region as it is an interconnected platform.

 KTP’s main focus will therefore be on:

  • knowledge exchange on short supply logistics solutions and business models to target audience;
  • best practice display of AFN to facilitate contact with them;
  • the creation of new knowledge and sharing new practices for short food supply chains (Competition of Ideas (Price / Award), open access);
  • an interactive platform for users with active engagement (Short quizes, Learning courses, Certification of specific knowledge, Competition of Ideas (Price / Award)).

The KTP will be a web-based tool that covers the following main topics relevant to small scale short food supply chains: information systems and digitalization of logistics processes, advanced delivery principles, consolidation of deliveries, vehicle routing optimization, environmentally friendly transport modes, sharing of logistics facilities, common packaging solutions and standards, energy use optimization systems, inclusive business models for systemic resilience, etc.

The Matchmaking Platform

The Matchmaking Platform will on the other hand facilitate new B2B logistics solutions and services. 

The rise of alternative food systems, characterized by local sourcing, sustainable practices, and ethical considerations, has brought forth the need for efficient and effective means of connecting key players within these networks. This is where Matchmaking Platform plays an important role, to act as a virtual bridge between the different stakeholders (farmers, consumers, logistics providers and online marketplaces involved in the alternative food sector) with the resources and expertise they need to optimise logistics needs, improve efficiency, promote collaboration, create new partnerships and develop new or improved logistics services.

 Therefore, the Matchmaking Platform will aim to foster direct connections between farmers and consumers, connect farmers with specialized logistics providers, create direct linkages between AFNs and large-scale consumers, cater to the specific needs of hospitality businesses, leverage the expertise of research and policy institutions, expand the reach of AFNs through online platforms for local food supply.

Designed as a web-based “marketplace” tool, its design and operation will be meticulously crafted to foster the creation of innovative partnerships, enhance logistics services, and promote sustainable practices.

By achieving these goals, the Matchmaking Platform will play an important role in transforming the alternative food sector, making it more efficient, sustainable, and equitable.

Through the development of innovative tools and solutions, such as the Knowledge Transfer Platform and the Matchmaking Platform, Food4CE project represents a significant step towards improving the sustainability and resilience of food supply systems in Europe. 

The ultimate goal is to build a strong and mutually supportive network that can benefit AFNs across Central Europe, contributing significantly to reducing the carbon footprint of food distribution and improving the overall sustainability of the food supply chain.