The 2017 and most successful edition of the European Biotech Week begins on Monday, with a record 140 events taking place in 19 countries. The events, hosted at national and local level by a variety of organisations, companies and enthusiasts, aim to raise awareness and engage communities across Europe about biotechnology’s discoveries, benefits and potential.

“Biotechnology is possibly the most exciting and innovative European industry and research community: from helping our economy make smart, carbon neutral, use of waste, to developing crops that help farmers withstand all sorts of climatic challenges and to creating treatments that respond to unmet medical needs, biotechnology improves our lives in many ways.

All those involved in the use of biology to benefit society and the environment are inspired by what they do. This is why many of them are sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm with the broader public in a weeklong celebration of the sector”, said John Brennan, EuropaBio’s Secretary General.

Initiatives throughout the week are as diverse as the organisers themselves. They include conferences, workshops, and hands on laboratories, exhibitions and open doors in companies, laboratories, research institutes and museums. In Brussels, the week will be featured during a weeklong exhibition in the European Parliament. At national level, the week’s reputation and reach are growing: for example, after a medal from Italy’s President in 2015, this year’s Portuguese initiatives take place under the High Patronage of the President of Portugal.

“Knowing that biotechnology has the potential to greatly benefit people is a good thing – showing and sharing that potential with society and the local community is even better. Therefore, I do hope that more people across Europe will join in and learn about biotechnology in an event close to them. Everyone can find out more about what is happening in their country by visiting www.biotechweek.org”, added John Brennan.