Category: Regional potential, bioeconomy strategies and action plans

Biovalley Finland project

Biovalley Finland project

This project ends on: 31/05/2022

Biovalley Finland consolidates and integrates diverse primary production, industrial applications and high-quality wide-ranging expertise in order to create common prosperity.

Biovalley is a region of strong expertise in the natural resource sector and bioeconomy in the Kalajokilaakso, Lestijokilaakso, and Perhonjokilaakso river valley areas as well as in the sub-region areas of Kokkola and Pietarsaari. The region lives strongly and diversely from the bioeconomy.

In addition to agriculture and forestry, there is strong natural resource sector business activity in food industry, wood processing industry, building carpentry industry, bioenergy and in the manufacture of equipment, as well as in chemical industry. The diverse business activities are supported by research- and development organizations and educational organizations, which provide companies with the latest research information and skilled personnel.

Contacts:

Jouni Kaipainen PhD, Senior Researcher, University of Jyväskylä: jouni.p.kaipainen@jyu.fi

Founding source: ERDF European Regional Development Fund, React-EU (2014-2023) (Funding programs)

Website

UNLOCK project

UNLOCK project

This project ends on: 30/04/2025

Unlock: Unlocking a feather bioeconomy for keratin-based agricultural products

As Europe continues on its trajectory to a circular bio economy, much of the work in achieving this will lie in identifying and developing new or more efficient value chains from existing waste streams. One such waste stream is in the poultry sector, where more than 15 million tonnes of meat are produced annually. While much of the waste here is already valorised, the vast quantity of feathers produced are unexploited. Currently, only around 25% of feather waste is collected; what is gathered is frequently used for meal and fertiliser applications, which are seen as mid- to low-value applications, with low margins to match.

However, feathers are made up of nearly 90% keratin, a valuable protein that can provide a resource for biodegradable materials, including bioplastics, with applications in agriculture. The UNLOCK project seeks to demonstrate how to release the value inherent in this waste stream, by developing smart logistic strategies and efficient feather biorefineries based on steam and pressure hydrolysis -. Ultimately, this will help to establish a feather-based bioeconomy that can generate innovative bio-based functional materials for agricultural applications.

By overcoming many of the existing difficulties in collecting and processing feathers obtained from slaughterhouses, the UNLOCK project aims to position this waste chain from feathers as a source of raw material for keratin for use in agriculture. It will find applications in products such as forest and seed trays, nonwoven geotextiles, hydroponic foams and mulch films. The advantages of these materials include biodegradation aligned to the duration of crops, the capacity to add nitrogen back to soils and generating zero waste at end-of-life.

Contacts:

Sarah Montes, Project Coordinator: smontes@cidetec.es

Capucine Pineau, Communication and Dissemination Manager: c.pineau@greenovate-europe.eu

Founding source: Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) under the EU Horizon 2020 programme

Website

 

WaysTUP! project

WaysTUP! project

This project ends on: 28/02/2023

Converting bio-waste into valuable products will contribute to a circular economy. The EU-funded WaysTUP! project aims to establish new value chains for urban bio-waste utilisation to produce higher value products, including food and feed ingredients through a multi-stakeholder approach. The project is set to showcase a rash of new products produced from urban bio-waste-to-bio-based processes starting from different feedstocks, including fish and meat waste, spent coffee grounds, household source separated bio-waste and used cooking oils. In its implementation, WaysTUP! will develop a behavioural change approach with citizens and local communities, improving and changing longstanding perceptions on urban bio-waste. It will also help promote active participation of citizens in the collection of urban bio-waste.

Contacts: Manolis Tsantakis: mdt@etam.gr
Maroulla Schiza mcs@etam.gr

Website

 SMARTCHAIN project

 SMARTCHAIN project

Project concluded

Objective

SMARTCHAIN is an ambitious, 3 year project with 43 partners from 11 European countries including key stakeholders from the domain of short food supply chain as actors in the project. The central objective is to foster and accelerate the shift towards collaborative short food supply chains and, through concrete actions and recommendations, to introduce new robust business models and innovative practical solutions that enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of the European agri-food system.
Using bottom-up, demand-driven research, the SMARTCHAIN consortium i) will perform a multi-perspective analysis of 18 case studies of short food supply chains in terms of technological, regulatory, social, economic and environmental factors, ii) will assess the linkages and interactions among all stakeholders involved in short food supply chains and iii) will identify the key parameters that influence sustainable food production and rural development among different regions in Europe.
The project aims to establish 9 national communities of short food supply chains (Innovation and Collaboration Hubs) in different partner countries (France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Serbia, Spain and Switzerland) and a virtual innovation hub in order to facilitate stakeholder engagement, bringing farmers and consumers together in a trust-enhancing environment enabling them to generate demand driven-innovations.
Combination of scientific and practical knowledge and the use of innovation workshops will enable the development of practical innovative solutions as well as the promotion of a framework for different forms of collaborative short food supply chains in urban and rural areas. SMARTCHAIN will generate concrete actions for knowledge transfer, through the organisation of multi-stakeholder workshops and training activities for farmers and short food supply chain entrepreneurs.

Contacts:  Susanne Braun: susanne.braun@uni-hohenheim.de

Website

 UrBIOfuture project

 UrBIOfuture project

Project concluded

UrBIOfuture’s main goal is to bring Europe to the forefront of the bio-based industry, a sector in full growth that requires a high number of experts in its workforce. However, one of the challenges for its development is the educational gap between the professional profiles demanded by the sector and the existing educational offer. To bridge this gap is one of the main purposes of UrBIOfuture, which started on May 1st with the goal of boosting careers, new educational programmes and research activities. Since then, this initiative carried out research to map European educational programmes involving bio-based activities and to identify the skills mismatch between them and the bioindustry needs. In addition, it involved stakeholders from the education sector, academia and industry, it organised a series of events, and it elaborated a set of materials, all with the aim of setting the path for the industry to attract qualified talent.

Contacts: info@urbiofuture.eu and Ana Martinez: anamartinez@sustainableinnovations.eu

Website

 Transition to Green Economy project

 Transition to Green Economy project

Project concluded

Objective

The main objective of the project was to contribute to a transition towards a green economy in Europe through organization of the international conference “Transition to a green economy” (T2gE). This international conference was an event of major strategic nature during the Slovak Presidency of the European Council. Conference brought together a broad spectrum of stakeholders. Its ambition was to improve understanding of the green economy concept, identify conclusions and pathways for transition as well as to involve and mobilise various actors and stakeholders in the discussions of possible future actions. The conference also aimed to strengthen synergy among various recent initiatives and programmes launched by the European Commission (i.e 7EAP, Circular economy package, Energy Union, Juncker Commission’s priorities etc) and by the Member States, to the benefit of the overall coherence.

The conference aimed to bring together policymakers from various EU countries, as well as a range of stakeholders from international organizations, academia, business, and civil society and encourage an open debate around key green economy issues. At the end of the conference, draft conclusions, for both the national and the European level, were approved in order to be useful tool for implementation of policy in the field of green economy. Parallel breakout sessions were devoted to various relevant subjects with the involvement of representatives from civil society, policymakers, business, science and innovations, and regional and local authorities. The participants presented examples of the green economy approaches from successful countries, which were discussed and reflected in the conclusions to ensure that green economy policy conclusions are relevant to countries’ needs. Part of the conference was oriented on practical demonstration of Slovak examples of green/circular economy – field trip.

Contacts: Robert Miskuf: r.miskuf@pedal-consulting.eu

Website

 TRADEIT project

 TRADEIT project

Project concluded

Objective

The TRADEIT project is a multidisciplinary, multi-sectorial collaborative project supporting a Network of Traditional Food SMEs and Food Researchers in the areas of Collaboration, Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Knowledge and Technology Transfer to increase the competitiveness and inter-regional advantage of Traditional Food Producing SMEs. This will be achieved through focused regional coordination and support activities and events facilitated by the establishment of 9 Regional Traditional Food Knowledge and Technology Transfer Hubs. Each Hub will host a TRADEIT stakeholder sub-network (defined by region, language and/or food group), the members of which will benefit from a suite of knowledge and technology offerings over the course of the project. Food researchers from across Europe will be provided with the opportunity to attend the TRADEIT Entrepreneurial Summer School in which an entrepreneurial skillset will be developed to facilitate future R&D&I Enterprise and Commercialisation activities. The regional focus of the project will be further developed in the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda which will promote regional R&D&I for pan-European benefit. The TRADEIT project aligns with, and contributes to, the goals and objective of a number of EU Initiatives, Strategies and Policies including Europe 2020 the Innovation Union Flagship Initiative, Horizon 2020, Cohesion Policy in particular Smart Specialisation Innovating for Sustainable Growth: a Bio-economy for Europe and Food Law Regulation

Contacts: Helena McMahon
helena.mcmahon@staff.ittralee.ie

Website

RUBIZMO project

RUBIZMO project

This project ends on: 31/10/2021

RUBIZMO will identify business models with high potential for empowering rural communities to take advantage of the opportunities arising from improved value chain optimisation. It will directly supporting the creation of sustainable jobs and growth in rural economies, supporting a multi-actor approach for generation of shared-value. Ultimately, the project looks to contribute to rural development in Europe, supporting the Europe 2020 Strategy for Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth, as well as supporting Regional and Rural Development policy.

To do this, the project will identify innovative business models (developed or identified in existing projects under FP7, H2020, Interreg, Central Europe, etc.) with a significant potential to support modernisation and sustainable growth in rural economies, and relevant to the food sector, bio-based value chains and ecosystem services. Business models with the potential to contribute to the modernisation and sustainable growth of rural economies will be selected, packaged and classified according to their nature, comprising technologies, services, business support structures, financing mechanisms, etc.

This will result in the creation of four practical, user-oriented tools:
– Virtual library of business cases, to inspire and inform potential entrepreneurs about business opportunities;
– Guidelines on creating favourable conditions for the deployment of innovative business models, to help public authorities and rural networks create adequate framework conditions for rural innovation;
– Toolkit for clustering and network development in rural areas;
– Transformation support tool, to help individual entrepreneurs understand which business models are best adapted to their situation, and how to go about implementing change.

The project will then prepare Europe-wide upscaling and replication in rural areas using real life cases, taking account of the complexity of transferring value chains.

Contacts: Justin Casimir: justin.casimir@ri.se
Daniel Lissoni d.lissoni@greenovate-europe.eu

Website

Virtual Library

Youtube channel

 POWER4BIO project

 POWER4BIO project

Project concluded

POWER4BIO project aims at empowering regional stakeholders to boost the transition towards bioeconomy regions in Europe by providing them with the necessary tools, instruments and guidance to develop and implement sound sustainable bioeconomy strategies. In particular, POWER4BIO will define a methodology based on a 3-steps approach (stakeholders engagement, regional analysis and strategy development) to guide European regions when preparing and reviewing their regional bioeconomy strategy and its associated implementation plan (roadmap), and which will be ultimately integrated in a Bioregional Strategy Accelerator Toolkit.

POWER4BIO will also develop a catalogue of bio-based business models, including best practice examples, to support regions understand, identify and select the most adequate bio-based solutions for developing their bioeconomy and; POWER4BIO will issue recommendations to use and align the main funding instruments and policies in Europe to support bioeconomy business models.

Moreover, POWER4BIO will rely on a comprehensive programme to foster mutual learning and intra- and interregional collaboration and networking among regional stakeholders to ensure knowledge transfer across sectors and regions and to jointly develop and complement different sustainable bioeconomy value chains within 10 participant regions member of the consortium (5 of which coming from Central and Eastern Europe) from 9 different countries.

Finally, POWER4BIO will design and deliver an ambitious training programme to increase the skills and capacity of the regional stakeholders in several important aspects of the bioeconomy (sustainability in the bio-based value chains, synergies in funding instruments, technology transfer and entrepreneurship, etc.). All in all, the potential brought in the project is huge, considering that the 10 participant regions represent a population of around 88 million people, a GDP of 2460 billion EUR and an area of almost 450,000 km2.

Contacts: Ignacio Martin: imartin@fcirce.es 
Christine Beusch: beusch@e-p-c.de

Website

Interreg MED Green Growth community

Interreg MED Green Growth community

This project ends on: 31/10/2021

Within the framework of the Interreg MED Programme, Green Growth is a thematic community promoting green and circular economy in the Mediterranean region by enhancing cross-sectoral innovation practices through an integrated and territorially-based cooperation approach. Since 2016, the Green Growth Community (GGC) have involved 165 partners from 13 Euro-Mediterranean countries in 14 innovation projects working on four focus areas:

  • food systems
  • eco-innovation
  • smart cities
  • waste management

The GGC supports its projects in knowledge sharing, communication and capitalisation efforts in order to increase their impact at market and policy levels. The GGC produces unified results and knowledge that are transferred and capitalized to key stakeholders in the Mediterranean region and beyond. It is thereby contributing to achieve the targets of the EU Green Deal and the EU Circular Economy Action Plan, as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) labelled the community in October 2019, acknowledging its potential to support the transition to a green and circular economy and to deliver concrete benefits to the citizens of the Mediterranean region. Since November 2020, the GGC is a member of the Coordination Group of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform (ECESP).

 

Contacts: Mercè Boy Roura, merce.boy@uvic.cat

Green Growth website 

Capitalisation platform