The province of Groningen has been an agricultural region for many centuries, with a focus on potato and sugar beet crops, seed potatoes and livestock. About 70% of the land in Groningen is still used for agriculture. 23% of global seed potato exports come from Groningen.
Also in this sector, the transition to a sustainable and circular economy is the main focus. Increasingly, the agricultural sector is working together with the chemical sector in the bio-based economy. Greenlincs is a network for agrifood and bio-based economy in the Northern Provinces. Recently the University of Groningen joined forces with the provincial government to launch a chair for sustainable agriculture.
Main players in the agricultural sector are:
Avebe, a cooperative of over 2500 farmers together forming the largest producer worldwide of potato starch products, and Koepen, world leader in the field of artificial insemination of meat and dairy cattle.
And again in this sector, a collaborative and pioneering attitude dominates, as is visible in the Avebe innovation centre, launched in 2018, and the Carbohydrate Competence Centre, the leading knowledge centre in the Netherlands in the field of carbohydrates.