Home Events News SPACE 2022: 36th edition helps petfood ingredient producers to ‘rise to the challenge’ of climate change

SPACE 2022: 36th edition helps petfood ingredient producers to ‘rise to the challenge’ of climate change

SPACE 2022: 36th edition helps petfood ingredient producers to ‘rise to the challenge’ of climate change

After two years of sanitary constraints due to the pandemic of Covid-19, SPACE was very happy to welcome its exhibitors and visitors to help to celebrate its 36 years anniversary.

During these two years, the organisation took time to reinvent the layout of certain halls and create new focus areas such as Aquaculture SPACE. Indeed, over 100 companies represent the aquaculture this year and were easily recognise with the ‘Aquaculture’ logo on their stand.

Moreover, after the warm summer and heat waves that happened recently in France and more largely in Europe, one of the main aims of Space was to tackle early on this subject linked to climate change. There are also concerns over rising production costs and certain solutions were found in the halls of SPACE.

Taking place from September 13 –15, 2022 at the Parc Expo of Rennes in France, free shuttles were available from the train station, the Republic Square and the Airport. Free shuttles for visitors were also available from different cities around Rennes.

Climate change & food sovereignty

During the first day, the Minister of Agriculture, Marc Fesneau, spent the whole day in the aisles of the different halls with Marcel Denieul, president of the SPACE. He took time to talk to stock producers, exhibitors, professionals as well as students about the issues that the sector faces such as the climate crisis, food sovereignty and produce remuneration.

“Drought and feedstock and energy inflation create one of the greatest stresses for a farmer – not being able to feed their animals,” comments Marcel Denieul, in his opening speech.

Moreover, a lot of tension is currently being experienced and the sector is usually seen as a climate problem. SPACE’s President regretted these fingers being pointed at farmers.

“While it is precisely faced with these issues (climate change) that farms can contribute positively underscoring its mission to feed the country” and ended by asking, “Can we really equate greenhouse gas emissions from food production with those from less essential activities?”

Rising to the challenge of climate change

Climate change was also at the heart of the Espace for the Future, with a debate that happened on Wednesday, the second day of the show on ‘Herbivores, a source of solutions!’ The main conclusion drawn was that being responsible for a high proportion of greenhouse gases, breeders must rise to the challenge of climate change but also grasp the opportunities.

Another problem that was discussed is food and feed sovereignty. Indeed, the pandemic crisis followed by the war in Ukraine have shown how dependent the French agriculture has become on imports (feed, energy, etc).

The French minister added that the war in Ukraine is “showing us how food can be weaponised” and therefore, how important it is to keep and improve our sovereignty.

 “Even if animal farming must evolve and improve regarding climate issues, there is no future for agriculture without animals. It is a part of our food sovereignty structuring our regions and countryside and a source of employment,” he adds.

Innov’Space Awards: 36 Starstruck companies

On the Tuesday evening, the exhibitor’s party took place where the Innov’Space Awards were given. 36 exhibitors out of the 103 initial applications examined had between one and three starts distributed by the jury. These new tools or services assist farmers to improve their working conditions and are a veritable showcase of innovation.

Indeed, one in four French visitors and four in ten international visitors head for the winners’ stand. The jury is made of 50 members from the Agricultural chambers, technical institutes, INRAE (Intitut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement – National Institute of Reasearch for Agriculture, Food and Environment), INPI (Institut National de la Propriété Intellectuel – National Institute for Industrial Property), ANSES (Agence Nationale de Sécurité Sanitaire de l’Alimentation – National Agency of Food Safety), GDS, veterinaries, farmers and specialised journalists.

This year was also the 25th anniversary of the award and for this occasion selected the 100 most impactful innovations.

During the show


Around 1200 exhibitors came to the SPACE to display their products and services in 10 different halls plus an outdoor space. 22 countries were represented including the United States, India, China, Singapore, Germany, the United Kingdom and Denmark.

Every two years, feed equipment manufacturers are represented at the SPACE. Among them Bühler, Amandus Kahl, CPM Europe, Ferotec, Sabe, Morillon and La Meccanica. Feed producers and nutrition companies such as AB Vista, Adisseo, Evonik, Danisco, DSM, Nor-Feed, Mixscience, Phileo by Lesaffre, Foss, Cargill were also here like every year.


Every day, around 30 conferences took place with wide topics from the climate change and how livestock farming is improving in order to face the current challenges to the impacts of the war in Ukraine for the French agriculture and supply of feed and energy.

During a panel presentation, a representative from l’Institut de l’Élevage (Livestock Farming Institute) underlined “the importance of communicating and defending agriculture – and livestock farming – as it is necessary and beneficial for all people but also how innovative the sector has been in order to reduce impact on the environment.”

The speaker also mentions that the use of water and the polemics that raised in France during the warm and dry summer. Indeed, a lot of restrictions have taken place during the summer and, once again, the public pointed fingers at the agricultural sector and its use of water, adding that “water is necessary to live, and transforming water into feed and food is not a waste or wrong use of the water when compared to swimming pools.”

Indeed, France is the second country, after the United States, in number of private swimming pools. “With climate change and the increasing rareness of water, we need to have a proper discussion and national strategy on the use of water,” she adds.

 Despite these big challenges that the french sector is facing, she concludes by saying that she is “optimistic for the future as France has unique resources in terms of lands, climate, soil and technology”.

General atmosphere/attendance

Over the three days of the show, SPACE gathered over 90,000 visitors (of whom 8400 came from 120 different countries) and close to 1200 exhibitors (of which 300 were international and 250 taking part in SPACE for the first time).

After the pandemic and two years during which travel by visitors from abroad was heavily restricted, those in attendance felt that the event recovered its full international dimension and glory.

Delegations from around the world came to meet exhibitors, visit farms and draw inspiration from their organisational models. Despite a difficult context both nationally and internationally, these three days have proved that with constructive dialogue and high attendance we can find solutions and have a positive outcome.

Indeed, SPACE is an exceptional showcase for the industry, a modern, constantly evolving industry with bright future. The show was full of positive energy and optimism to inspire confidence in farmers’ determination to carry out their jobs and ensure food sovereignty.

The next edition will take from Tuesday 12 to Thursday 14 September 2023 at the same venue, the Rennes Exhibition Centre.

Article Provided by Antoine Tanguy, International Petfood magazine, France.


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