European projects

The Municipality of Milan participates in numerous European projects in multiple funding lines, including Horizon, Urbact, Erasmus+, Dear and much more.

The objectives of this action are:

  • lo exchange of good practices between European cities;
  • l'launch of pilot initiatives is preferably used for promotion of innovation in the city in the areas of competence of the food policy such as: school meals, agriculture, fight against waste, food education, research and innovation;
  • the start of international advocacy actions with the subjects competent in the specific matters concerning food and the topics indicated above.

Among the recent projects led or participated by the Food Policy area of ​​the Municipality of Milan we find:

FOOD TRAILS, a European project lasting 4 years (2021 – 2024) under the Horizon 2020 programme, to accelerate innovation in the food field and support the development of urban food policies. The project consists of co-planning of 11 pilot food policy activities in the cities involved, for the creation and/or consolidation of urban food policies through the sharing of knowledge and good practices.

The goal is to identify any administrative obstacles to the replicability and transferability of policies, subsequently allowing this knowledge to be extended to a wider network of cities. In each city, “LivingLabs” to coordinate the implementation of food system innovation initiatives, foster idea-sharing between institutions and the city's ecosystem of actors, and attract financial opportunities that contribute to the long-term sustainability of such systems.

The partners of the FOOD TRAILS project are eleven cities, three universities e five important players in the food system. The Municipality of Milan is the leader of the project and participates together with Milano Ristorazione as the main implementing body, while the other cities are: Bergamo (IT), Birmingham (UK), Bordeaux (FR), Copenhagen (DK), Funchal (PR) , Grenoble (FR), Groningen (NL), Thessaloniki (GR), Tirana (AL) and Warsaw (PL) – for a total of 7,7 million European citizens.

The partnership is completed by FOOD TRAILS, Fondazione Politecnico di Milano (IT), Cariplo Factory (IT), Eurocities (BE), Slow Food International (IT), EAT Foundation (NO), and the Universities of Cardiff (UK), Wageningen ( NL) and Roskilde (DK).

They will also come the 51 participating cities of the Eurocities FOOD Working Group were involved, the signatory cities of the MUFPP – Milan Urban Food Policy Pact, and 21 other cities (so-called “fellows cities”, without budget): Toronto, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Lima, La Paz, Mérida, Rio de Janeiro, Guangzhou, Seoul, Cape Town, Melbourne, New Haven, Tel Aviv, Baltimore, Washington DC, Mezitli, Kazan, Praia, Quelimane, Curitiba and Guadalajara.

For more information: 

SchoolFood4Change (SF4C) aims to involve schools as catalysts for a transformation of the food system towards healthy and sustainable diets for both humans and the planet. The project is coordinated by ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, and aims to bring together all the main players in school meals: students, parents and teachers, farmers, chefs and canteen staff, sustainable food supply experts, dieticians, and businesses locals. The heart of the project is a triple approach that includes: the asustainable public procurement, healthy and sustainable diets andholistic approach "Whole School Food Approach".

Schoolfood4Change is funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 programme. It started in January 2022 and will end in December 2025. The results will be replicable inside and outside the EU. The SF4C approach will be implemented by 33 partner, among which many public administrations manage the school lunch service.

The project is co-financed by the Horizon 2020 – Research and Innovation Framework programme. The leader of the consortium is ICLEI (Germany), while the partners in addition to Municipality of Milan participating together with Milano Ristorazione are, Ecosistemi Foundation (Italy), University of Alcala (Spain), SEI TALLINN – Stockholm Environmental Institute (Estonia), Rikolto (Belgium), University of Gastronomic Sciences (Italy), WWF (Sweden), International Federation of Groups European Regional Movements for Organic Agriculture (Sweden), VTO Alapitvany (Hungary), Risteco – The City That Eats (France), Eurecat Foundation (Spain), Danachda (Austria), Stichting Fair Trade Advocacy Office (Netherlands), Mensa Civica (Spain), Speseiraume F+B (Germany), Skutecne Zdrava Skola (Czech Republic), Skutecne Zdrava Skola (Slovakia), Municipality of Budapest (Hungary), Municipality of Kobenhavns (Denmark), Municipality of Essen (Germany), Municipality of Ghent (Belgium), Municipality of Leuven (Belgium), Municipality of Lyon (France), Municipality of Malmo (Sweden), Municipality of Nuoro (Italy), Municipality of Nuremberg (Germany), Municipality of Tallinn (Estonia), Municipality of Umea (Sweden), Municipality of Vienna (Austria), Municipality of Viimsi (Estonia), Departmental Council of Dordogne (France), Municipality of Valencia (Spain).

For more information:

AfriFOODlinks is a Horizon Europe project lasting 4 years (November 2022-November 2026), has a budget of 11,8 million euros and is implemented by a consortium made up of 26 African and European partners. It represents one of the few Horizon Europe project experiences conceived, led and managed by African institutions. 

The project coordinator is ICLEI Africa. The Municipality of Milan, through the MUFPP, is among the project partners and coordinates one of the Working Packages

AfriFOODlinks aims to improve food and nutrition security in 15 African cities and 5 European cities (+45 network cities) through: 

  1. Promotion of healthy and sustainable diets and the more informed choices of citizens;
  2. Transformation of urban food environments (urban food environments) in 15 African cities through innovative projects and practices;
  3. Promotion of multi-actor inclusive governance systems to strengthen the role and capacities of public officials, established and informal small businesses, communities, young people and women; 
  4. Acceleration and support of innovative agri-food businesses, led by women and young people.

For more information:

CLEVERFOOD is a Horizon Europe project with the aim of coordinate different stakeholders involved in the transformation of the European food system in line with the EU Food 2030 Policy Framework, the Farm to Fork Strategy, the EU Missions, the EU Bioeconomy Strategy, the European Urban Initiatives and the Fit for 55 package.

The goal of the project is chart the path to a fair, healthy and sustainable food system and to this end support new and existing projects, partnerships and networks with a joint and collaborative approach.

The methodology used consists of: 1) Policy Labs, 2) Living Labs and 3) Pan-European multi-actor and public engagement. This will allow society to be mobilized to transform food systems through the creation of the FOOD 2030 Project Collaboration Network and the network of labs connected to FOOD 2030.

I Policy Lab they will develop Transformative governance models and strategies to advance food policy and legislation. To this end, CLEVERFOOD will launch a peer learning program during the project, organize a dialogue with stakeholders and bring together policy makers from all levels of governance.

I Living lab will accelerate social and technical innovation to support food system transformation. Measures include: co-creating strategies to overcome obstacles and build sustainable food value chains; mobilizing impact investors; promoting the adoption of new technologies and monitoring the transformation of the food system.

Through the Policy and Living Labs, CLEVERFOOD will support food system science education for children and youth and create a collaborative network to improve teaching at the higher education level.

CLEVERFOOD has also developed a toolkit in line with FOOD 2030 for public and multi-actor involvement that is based on broad variety of participatory methods and tools, including dialogues, co-creation and co-analysis workshops, reflective learning sessions, hackathons, world cafés, exchange visits and mutual learning, participatory platforms and the Food Policy Council.

The project is coordinated by the University of Copenhagen. Among the partners: Eurocities, Municipality of Milan, SusMetro, Wageningen University, EitFood, VU Athena Institute, ICONS, ZonMw, Ecsite, Eufic, Ellinogermaniki agogi, oMKi, SlowFood, Frej, AKI Institute of Agricultural Economics, Vegetarian Society of Denmark, SEGES Innovation, World Resources Institute, IrsiCaixa, Ministerstwo Rolnictwa i Rozwoju Wsi, Ciencia Viva, JPI.

For more information:

Cultivate is a European-wide research project that starts from the need to undertake an urgent transition towards more equitable and sustainable food systems. Cities, with their urban and peri-urban food systems (UPU), can be key players as long as they combat the injustices and inequalities that make them fragile and vulnerable to shocks. Some of the possible solutions are related to food sharing initiatives (Food Sharing Initiatives - FSIs) which through i paths for the recovery of food surpluses, solidarity economy and urban agriculture they tend to activate positive civic energies.

The project is funded by the European Union's Horizon Europe programme. It started in January 2023 and will end in December 2026. The results will be replicable inside and outside the EU.

Cultivate means support all the main actors of the cities, third sector bodies, policy makers, food producers and distributors, researchers and citizens to move towards resilient and sustainable food sharing with concrete tools such as the Food Sharing Calculator, the Menu of Good Governance, the Library of Citizen Engagement and the Community of Practice Amplification Programme.

The consortium leader is Trinity College Dublin (Ireland) and the partners are ICLEI European Secretariat (Germany), Lunds University (Sweden), Wageningen University (Holland), Barcelona University (Spain), ADAPT (Ireland), ICONS (Italy), participating as public bodies are the Metropolitan City of Barcelona (Spain), the Municipality of Milan (Italy), the Municipality of Utrecht (Holland), participating as an extended network Espigoladors (Spain), Cascoland (Holland), UpFarming (Portugal), FoodCloud (Ireland), Dublin City Council (Ireland), Zusammen leben (Germany), Boroume (Greece), Nesehnuti (Czech Republic), Brighton & Hove Food Partnership (United Kingdom).

For more information:

L'EU Urban Agenda - Thematic Food Partnership brings together stakeholders involved in food systems in order to build a shared vision on the topic and will use the necessary means for its sustainable implementation. It will bring added value by creating an important exchange platform that will allow better visibility and synergies between ongoing initiatives. His role will be that of provide input to European regulation and funding and multi-level governance actors, in order to better address local challenges; connect and build the capacity of cities to support positive food system transformation. 

Its sustainability and effectiveness is guaranteed by:

  • a multi-level organization that increases the visibility and contribution of cities and allows timely and alternative involvement of multiple local authorities depending on the topic in question and the necessary skills and contributions;
  • a set of digital tools for data collection, analysis and visualization that facilitate a global perspective on the topic and action on the ground, as well as collaborative contributions, comparative scenario building, evaluation and informed decision making.

Thematic focus
The transformation of food systems requires a systemic approach and the thematic partnership will give priority to the role of cities in leading this transformation. Considering the current momentum and the need for comprehensive legislation to ensure food system resilience, the Partnership will work on lessons learned from ongoing initiatives.

The main objective of the Partnership is to promote coordination and collaboration between these initiatives, leveraging their joint efforts to drive change in food systems and position cities as catalysts for this change. The partnership recognizes the importance of flexibility and systemic orientation, which allow it to adapt and align with ongoing processes.

The UAEU Partnership on Food operates on the basis of core values ​​that guide its monitoring activities. These values ​​include the maintaining a food system perspective, support for multilevel governance, consideration of the real price of food (including externalities) and the recognition of food as a human right and common good.

To promote sustainable and equitable food systems, the partnership should address key issues such as agroecology, food justice, access to land and public land management. It highlights the importance of making food systems increasingly local, incorporating the external costs of food production into prices and encouraging public purchases of local and organic food. By supporting policy alignment and pooling of resources, the partnership has the potential to drive systemic transformation within the European Union and contribute to broader goals, such as the European Green Deal and the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.


National authorities

  • Food Systems Directorate, Ministry of Agriculture of Malta (MT)
  • French National Council for Food Resilience (CNRA) (FR)
  • Cities
  • Municipality of Milan (IT)
  • Lisbon Metropolitan Area (PT)
  • Environmental Studies Centre, Vitoria-Gasteiz City Council (ES)
  • Municipality of Mouans-Sartoux (FR)
  • City of Ghent(BE)
  • City of Zory(PL)
  • Urban Municipality of Kranj(SL)
  • City of Vantaa (FI)
  • Dublin City Council (IR)
  • Municipality of Kristiansand (NO)
  • Brasov Metropolitan Agency (RO)
  • Metropolitan Area of ​​Lille (FR)
  • Metropolitan area of ​​Cagliari(IT)
  • European/national city umbrella organisation
  • Eurocities (BE)
  • ICLEI European Secretariat (DE)
  • Other stakeholders
  • Ellinogermaniki Agogi (EL)
  • University of Barcelona (ES)
  • AESOP Sustainable Food Planning (IT)

European institutions

  • European Commission 
  • DG REGIO, 
  • DG SANTE, 
  • DG SEA, 
  • DG AGRI, 
  • DG RTD, 
  • JRC, 
  • European Commission Secretariat-General

For more information:

Updated: 04/04/2024