SinCE-AFC Project Summary

Circular Economy is a new approach of economic development models. It provides the potential to use one’s own waste as resource input to others productive chain, thus offering a longer life cycle of the products and a more environmentally friendly business approach. This regenerative system is of high priority in the EU. SinCE-AFC is being developed along with the on-going EU action plan for Circular Economy and the respective National Circular Economy Action Plans across the EU countries.

Although the principles of circular economy are already applied by many large industries, SMEs, which represent 99% of the business sector, still remain uninvolved due to lack of motivation and support. Thus, regional SMEs policies improvement towards a more regenerative economy is of high importance.  SinCE-AFC aims at involving SMEs of the Agri-Food chain in circular economy through the promotion of the appropriate managing and financial horizontal mechanisms. All the Agri-Food agents committed to the production, processing, packaging, distribution and final consumption are expected to operate in a co-ordinated way to better adapt to circular economy.

This objective will be achieved via the intense collaboration and interregional  exchange of experience of  9 partners, representing 7 regions, from 7 EU countries. The partnership’s tasks will focus on the investigation of efficient practices, via interregional thematic learning events, study visits, import workshops, stakeholders’ meetings and consultation processes, of how the relevant  policy instruments can be improved in order to assist SMEs to enter circular economy. The core results will be depicted in a joint study reflecting the related regulatory framework and good practices at regional and EU level.

The project will promote innovation, derive knowledge and develop close collaboration with the Interreg Europe Learning Platform as well as with the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform and RIS3 Platform Group.

Project Aims

The overall objective on SinCE-AFC is to improve policies in the field of regional innovation strategies by facilitating horizontal mechanisms that support and enhance SMEs entrepreneurship in the Agri-Food sector through the exploitation of Circular Economy opportunities. SinCE-AFC boosts an interregional learning process based on good examples and develops methods and concrete measures to improve the policies chosen by the partners with the common aim to propose mechanism and tools in favour of the creation, development and growth of SMEs in the Agri-Food chain using innovation principles of circular economy.

The project has the following sub-objectives:

  1. To achieve a systematic integration of mechanisms for the support of new and existing SMEs in the respective policy instruments addressed.
  2. To strengthen the institutionalized cooperation between the regional authorities and the Agri-Food business support actors with the goal of creating new business opportunities.
  3. To promote circular economy principles among Agri-Food entrepreneurs and build their capacity to exploit new business opportunities.
  4. To promote, where applicable, the RIS3 processes and delivery instruments (beyond the policy instruments addressed) with the aim of stronger valorizing the Agri-Food and circular economy.
  5. To enhance stakeholders involvement – local/regional authorities, development agencies, business chambers, entrepreneurial clusters,  SMEs, universities – in the development and delivery of activities with the framework of the Action Plans for the improvement of the policy instruments concerned.
  6. To promote social inclusion through the creation of new jobs in the area of circular ecomony in the Agri-Food sector.


Finally, a horizontal sub-objectives is to influence, through the results and approaches of SinCE-AFC, the European actors to adapt the future directions of regional business-friendly policies.


Project Partners

  • ANATOLIKI SA Development Agency of Eastern Thessaloniki’s Local Authorities (EL)
  • Region of Central Macedonia (EL)
  • Metropolitan City of Bologna (IT)
  • University of Bologna (IT)
  • Hajdu-Bihar County Government (HU)
  • Local Enterprise Office Donegal (IE)
  • Wielkopolska Region with the seat of the Marshal Office of the Wielkopolska Region in Poznan (PL)
  • South Muntenia Regional Development Agency (RO)
  • Devnya Municipality


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