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Network Initiative INNO-RURAL

Signed memorandum of cooperation within the REGIO VITALIS project

Establishment of INNO-RURAL network initiative to activate sustainable local supply for the needs of tourism and gastronomy and rural innovation and entrepreneurship

(13 November 2014)
In the context of Cooperation Conference INNO-RURAL, entitled "Sustainable local supply as a challenge for innovation and entrepreneurship in rural areas - fostering cooperation between agricultural, gastronomy and tourism providers", which took place in the framework of the Slovenian - Austrian cross-border project REGIO VITALIS, founding partners signed a memorandum of cooperation and the establishment of INNO-RURAL network. By signing the Memorandum of Cooperation the founders are establishing a partnership network to activate a sustainable local supply for the needs of tourism and gastronomy and sales channels in rural areas. The partners of INNO-RURAL initiative will promote regional innovation and development of entrepreneurship in rural areas and develop projects that connect the latest technologies with the best environmental standards at the same time, whereby it will involve residents in the process as end users, as well. The signatories of the partner network are: Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Styrian Technology Park Ltd., Maribor – Pohorje Tourist Board, Maribor Development Agency and Scientific Research Centre Bistra Ptuj, which will thus committed to foster innovation and entrepreneurship in rural areas and providing technical support to local partners from agriculture, gastronomy and tourism sectors. INNO-RURAL network is based on the sustainability of fostering innovation and entrepreneurship in rural areas and sustainable local supply: environmental, economic, social and ethical sustainability, and health and well-being. It is designed as a cooperation (partnership) network.

As a starting point for network initiative its initiators, Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Styrian Technology Park, were resulting from the existing situation in Slovenia, where difficulties with the local supply of food were encountered. It is reflected in the lack of connecting between supply and demand for raw material and products from the local / destination environment and dispersal of information on existing supply of raw materials and products. Respecting the results of the REGIO VITALIS project analysis of the situation the lack of moderation between supply and demand was determined, as there is currently no connecting elements (institutions) to take care about the organizational and managerial coordination among providers of local raw materials and products and tourism and gastronomy providers in the segment of the so-called B2B ("business to business") cooperation. Establishment of INNO-RURAL network and thereby support to the sustainable local supply of food, raw materials and products of rural areas, which builds on the sustainable, healthy, green (tourism) offer, represents beside B2B cooperation also high-quality grounding of complementary tourist offer. Establishment of INNO-RURAL network represents a qualitative upgrade of cooperation between entities of supply and demand for local (destination) raw material, products and support to product development, innovation and entrepreneurship in rural areas.

"With INNO-RURAL network initiative we want to contribute to the establishment of a quality and systematically arranged cooperation between tourism and gastronomy providers and farms and rural products suppliers. One of the main challenges of this kind of targeted integration is to increase the economic, environmental and social attractiveness of sustainable local supply." said Marko Kac from the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at today's press conference.

"For the Styrian Technology Park integration within the INNO-RURAL network means framework for the provision of high quality support services to development and fostering the entrepreneurship and innovation in areas related to the agrifood sector, as well. Participation synergy of national partners in the INNO-RURAL network represents a platform for cooperation with international partners and networks." said Tanja Senekovič, Styrian Technology Park Ltd.

Janja Viher from the Maribor - Pohorje Tourist Board pointed out the following: "Increasing the visibility of tourism destination, which tends to organized marketing of the Old Vine, the oldest vine in the world, is a fundamental challenge of Maribor - Pohorje Tourist Boards as Regional Destination Organization to enter into the INNO-RURAL network initiative. Enogastronomic excellence, supported by high-quality cooperation and innovation in the tourism offer design is the key to sustainably thriving tourist destination Maribor - Pohorje.".

Additional information:
Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (Marko Kac)
m: +386 41 91 77 40
e: [email protected]
w: www.zipiie.eu

REGIO VITALIS project is partly financed by the EU within the European Regional Development Fund, European Teritorial Cooperation Programme, Operational Programme Slovenia - Austria 2007-2013.


Zavod za inovativnost in podjetništvo (Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship)
Pobreška cesta 20
2000 Maribor, Slovenia
e: [email protected]
w: www.zipiie.eu 

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