European Scientific Conference – Towards Pesticide Free Agriculture

“What research to meet the pesticides reduction objectives embedded in the European Green Deal?”

Current crop protection in EU agriculture heavily relies on chemical pesticides to control weeds, pests and pathogens. European authorities, consumers and citizens are calling for a drastic reduction in the use and impact of chemical pesticides. The European Green Deal has set new targets and defined a roadmap with multiple strategies, including Farm to Fork and Biodiversity 2030. Ambitious targets have been set for agriculture and food, namely the goal of reducing by 50% the use and risk of chemical pesticides, as well as the use of more hazardous pesticides, by 2030.

This ambitious objective will require an in-depth change with new approaches based on prophylaxis, agroecology and the commitments of the sectors, but also major breakthroughs in the conception of new agricultural systems where crop protection does not rely only on the application of chemical pesticides. French and European research is clearly in line with this ambition with major paradigm shifts and disruptive research strategies, which should lead to such breakthrough innovations.

In order to discuss these strategies, the French Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment (INRAE) will organize a conference, included in the official French EU Presidency programme, and known as « What research to meet the pesticides reduction objectives embedded in the European Green Deal? ». The objective of this conference is to bring together researchers and professionals from all over Europe to share and discuss the latest science advances bringing solutions to pave the way towards an agriculture with much less chemical pesticides and ultimately with none at all. The conference is co-organised with the French National Research Programme Growing and Protecting Crops Differently (Cultiver et Protéger Autrement) and the European Research Alliance “Towards a Chemical Pesticide-Free agriculture”.  

The conference will take place in Dijon over two days. It will combine plenary and parallel sessions with presentation of scientific work by researchers from different European countries, discussions between researchers and professionals, field and infrastructures visits and a science-society meeting. English will be the speaking language.

6 scientific fields will be covered during the plenary and parallel sessions:

  • Cropping systems
  • Genetics and breeding of new cultivars for new services
  • Bio-inspired management of Crop Health
  • Agrifood system transformation
  • Towards pesticide free perennial crops
  • Public policies for a transition towards pesticide-free agriculture


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An event organised in the context of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union