Guðjón Þorkelsson

Strategic Scientist

The chemical composition of agricultural products is key

Icelandic agriculture has proved important to Icelanders, although its importance has diminished in a historical context in recent years and decades. Innovation in the production of agricultural products has been considerable, but there is still room for improvement.

The innovation took a certain leap, especially among smaller parties and entrepreneurs, following the project "Meeting of designers and farmers" but the project was a collaborative platform of the Iceland Academy of the Arts, Matís, Erpstaðir, Löngumýri, Hala in Suðursveit and Möðrudalur á fjöllum, with grants from Tæknijóður Rjóni Landbúnaðarins and Hönnunarsjóður Aurora. The Designers 'and Farmers' Meeting was an innovative project of the Academy of the Arts, where product designers and farmers competed with the aim of developing food products of the highest quality, starting in 2008 and ending in 2011.

Matís has contributed to Icelandic agriculture with expertise, research and innovation projects that have led to the production of excellent food that has found its way onto the market. In addition, Matís has promoted innovation in agriculture through so-called Matarsmiðjar, which have been located in key locations throughout the country, often temporarily, which have given entrepreneurs the opportunity to develop their products in certified kitchens, well-equipped, and thus lay the foundation for better utilization of underutilized raw materials from the local environment and increased value creation of agriculture throughout the country.

New opportunities lie ahead for Icelandic agriculture in the coming years. An increased flow of tourists offers marketing in Iceland of clean and unpolluted food produced from top quality raw materials to consumers who belong to a much larger market than here. A good reputation, where integrity is the guiding principle in all production and marketing, where scientific information is used in the right way to convey the key characteristics of Icelandic food, is the basis of all value creation. Consumers today not only want foods that taste good, contain quality ingredients and are produced in a sustainable way where nature is respected, but consumers also want the food to have a positive effect on physical activity and health, an effect that is confirmed by results scientific research.

In this context, Icelandic food production is in a key position!