Bioeconomy in the South Baltic area:
This Group will serve as an information hub on bioeconomy in the South Baltic area and beyond. It belongs to the Interreg project BioBIGG, which aims at identifying and developing attractive business opportunities for SMEs within the Bioeconomy and paving the way for a sustainable and circular bioeconomy.
This will be achieved through cross-border knowledge transfer, advisory activities and preparation of specific proposals for production of biomass-based products and services based on regional available biomass, hereby hopefully strengthening the innovation capacity of SMEs and mobilising investments and implementation of technology in the South Baltic area.
The project will host several cross-border events where SMEs and other stakeholders (policy and decision makers and others) can meet to share new insights and solutions for innovative products, processes and business opportunities within the bioeconomy.
BioBIGG project partners:
Roskilde University, RISE (Research Institute of Sweden), Gdańsk University of Technology, University of Greifswald, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Agency for Renewable Resources
You’re interested in news regarding the BioBIGG project and the overall bioeconomy in the South Baltic area – please visit the Linked_In group:
Below you find 8 reasons why joining the network is of advantage for you. And if you have any questions – please come forward. It’s possible to ask questions via private message.
8 Benefits of Joining the South Baltic Bioeconomy Network
1. Business development:
Find new ways of connecting to other bioeconomy stakeholders and explore new ideas for future expansion of your core business. During workshops, conferences and other events you will be able to find cooperation partners in the Baltic Area.
2. Knowledge transfer
Learn from the experiences of others who have gone through the same process. The exchange of information will lead to best practice cases and new contacts.
3. Collaborative working:
Networking is about building relationships, which could lead to new and innovativeways of doing business and developing new products. But you are not limited to that. Use our network to implement co-operation within new projects and joint-ventures.
4. Knowledge expansion:
Get access to a shared knowledge base and learn more by being part of a networking group. Information regarding bioeconomy in the Baltic Area is often rare and by being part of a multi-national group of stakeholder you will get insides of other stakeholders and developements in neighboring countries.
5. Market research:
The network gives you a chance to share ideas with other members and possiblepartners, in order to find new markets.
6. Find partners:
Find cooperation partners outside your core business, which complete your expertise by using the contacts provided within the network.
7. Personal development:
Contact and communication to international stakeholder will provide you with the views and state of knowledge of the respective region and institutions. Consequently, this will give you an overview how the regions and institutions define bioeconomy. The differences between the regions will become much clearer.
8. Promoting your company profile:
Get your company noticed. By joining the network your company will be noticed withinthe area by other stakeholders, which might be looking for new partners.
If you are not a member you will never know!
On the 6th and 7th of December the BioBIGG project held a two day cross-border workshop in Roskilde, Denmark addressing this question. During the workshop SMEs, universities and local authorities gave presentations on their approach to the implementation of a sustainable and circular bioeconomy with examples of promising utilisation of residues and development of biomass-based value chains.
The Danish SME, DACOFI, was one of the stakeholders that gave a presentation at the workshop. They presented their innovative technology for the filtration of biomass. One of the residues the company has been focusing on is brewers spent grain for the extraction of protein, fibers and vitamins, but the innovative technology has also been successfully applied to potato pulp as well as other types of biomass. Also, Guldborgsund municipality gave a presentation on their approach to developing a sustainable and circular bioeconomy at the local scale.
The second day of the workshop continued with a study tour to the local enterprise Solrød Biogas. Here the participants were first given an introduction to the implementation process – starting from the initial idea to the phase where the biogas plant was taken into operation and innovation efforts since then. Afterwards, participants were given a guided tour of the biogas plant that converts residual products into green energy, and fertiliser that is utilised by nearby farms with benefits for the climate and the environment.
Pieczarki Mazurskie is a family company established in 1988. It is located in northeastern Poland, in the Masuria region. Lakes and forests, which account for about 30% of the area, form a beautiful landscape in the region. Additionally, due to the high afforestation rate and low urbanisation and industrialisation indicators the air quality in Masuria is one of the best in the country.
Currently, the company consists of several mushroom farms. The total mushroom growing surface is 19 000 m2 . All buildings are equipped with modern air-conditioning devices, which enable controlled growing parameters, such as temperature, humidity, air movement and carbon dioxide. Due to this, appropriate conditions for mushroom growing can be provided, so that they are of the highest quality.
The plant produces mushrooms utilizing a Dutch technology. A group of skilled technologists is constantly watching the production process by keeping an eye on the behaviour of the mushroom spawn during the growing cycle. Through careful observation the crops with the optimum use of the nutrients attainable in the compost are selected. The harvest area is used very intensively so as to provide the maximum number of cycles in a year. All mushrooms are harvested by hand, so a wide range of mushrooms with the highest quality and different sizes is provided. After harvesting, mushrooms go directly into a vacuum cooling chamber, where they are quickly cooled to the temperature of 2°C. Then they are transported to the cold storage room, where they are prepared for sale. Low temperatures keep the products fresh for a long time. After the cultivation and harvesting of the mushrooms, all the buildings are thermally disinfected and compost is changed.
Due to the excellent cooperation with suppliers, many years of experience, the use of its own laboratory and professional management, the highest quality compost for the mushrooms is produced.
The company produces compost in its own compost production facility. The process is continuous as sufficient technical and engineering potential in the company is present. The company has its own straw storage (area above 10 000 m2) for the production of compost. The maximum amount of stored straw is about 100 000 tons, which is enough for two years of company production.
The production of mushrooms is about 3000 tonnes per year. Before distributing, mushrooms are packed according to individual customers requirements or in the standard way:
- 3 kg boxes of loose mushrooms
- box with trays, 4 × 500 g
- box with trays, 4 × 400 g
- box with trays, 6 × 250 g
Mushrooms can also be sorted to different size:
- 2 – 4 cm
- 4 – 5 cm
- 5 – 6 cm
- more than 6 cm “Riesen”
Waste from the processing (spent mushroom substrate) are stored at the company field and sold to local farmers as a fertiliser. The company has over 300 tons of spent mushroom substrate weekly.
Heaps of spent mushroom substrate
Pieczarki Mazurskie Fedor is a successful company that produces high-quality mushrooms. The clients of the company are all over the world. The largest recipient is England, but a lot of products are exported to Germany, The Netherlands and France.
A big issue for the company is the relatively high price of straw (40 euro per tonne) and the low price of spent mushroom substrate (3 euro per tonne) which is used as a fertiliser. The company should start working with universities, research centres or biological and chemical laboratories to find a new solutions in the field of bio-plastic, food supplements or pharmaceutics for the high value waste that contains huge amount of macronutrients (P2O5, K2O, CaO, MgO, Na2O, P,K Ca).
Sweden´s Innovation Agency, Vinnova, funded the project Plant Protein Factory with about €1 million to build, develop and implement a pilot plant for the extraction of different proteins and protein fractions from plant material. The pilot will be built at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) in Alnarp outside Malmö and will enable research leading towards increased resource-efficiency of how crops and crop residues can be used to produce intermediate products for the food, cosmetic and healthcare industry as well as the fodder industry. Through the cascading of plant material, also extraction of other high value plant components such as fibres and antioxidants will be investigated. Based on ideas from Eva Johansson and Bill Newson – co-workers in the BioBIGG consortium – Carl Jonson at SLU Holding has developed the project and was able to attract a larger number of industrial partners to the project. The project will run from 2018 to 2020 and be the basis for establishing a full-size plant.
The BioBIGG project will be hosting a cross-broader workshop on the the 6th and 7th of December in Roskilde. The focus of the workshop will be unlocking the innovation potential related to utilisation of biomass-based residues found in and along value chains in the South Baltic and sharing knowledge. Participation in the workshop is free of charge. Please download the programme and register below.
One of the BioBIGG partners, the University of Greifswald, led a significant step towards a regional network for the bioeconomy in north eastern Germany by submitting a strategy for the implementation phase of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research’s (BMBF) programme “Innovation and Structural Transformation” (German: WIR! – Wandel durch Innovation in der Region). The University of Greifswald and its core partners in the Plant³ consortium had already been successful in the concept phase of the WIR! programme, where Plant3 was one of 32 projects selected for funding by the BMBF.
The goal of Plant³ is to utilise the large stock of plant-based raw materials in north eastern Germany to make high value products in order to induce the transformation of the regional economy towards the bioeconomy. During the concept phase (March – October 2018) the four core partners, the University of Greifswald, WITENO GmbH, Wirtschaftsfördergesellschaft Vorpommern mbH and Enzymicals AG involved more regional actors from business, research institutions and NGOs as active partners in the Plant³ alliance. Several workshops were organised to define a shared strategy, develop the structure of the alliance, identify priority projects and activate partners (see pictures). Roskilde University is one interested partner and signed an LOI in the context of BioBIGG to support the alliance. In spring 2019, the BMBF will announce the successful alliances which will then be funded in the implementation phase. If the Plant³ strategy is selected up to €15 million in Federal funding could flow into the region in the next five years.
Plant³ builds on the strengths of the region of Western Pomerania: the multifarious renewable resources growing on agricultural land, wetland sites and in coastal waters will allow the region to take a pioneering role in the bioeconomy. Based on strategies for the high-value processing of plant-based raw materials, like arable crops, reed, or algae, the alliance aims to transform the economy of north eastern Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The vision behind Plant³ is that by 2030, products made from renewable plant-based raw materials will make a significant contribution to the total economic output of the region. Special emphasis will be put on high-value foodstuffs, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, fine chemicals, building and other materials.
North eastern Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is characterised by low population density and agriculture. The regional economy is marked by a lack of large companies and a lower than average share of manufacturing. It is a typical under-developed region. Yet it also an ideal place for the implementation of the bioeconomy. Due to the availability of sites (on agricultural land, wetlands, and in coastal waters) where renewable resources grow, the region can take a leading role in the transformation of the petrochemical-based economy to a bio-based, circular economy.
The updated bioeconomy strategy was presented at the end of October 2018 in Brussels. The updated 2018 Bioeconomy Strategy emphasises the importance of the development of a sustainable and circular bioeconomy aiming on maximising its contribution to the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as the Paris Agreement.
The action plan that is a part of the updated 2018 Bioeconomy strategy focuses on three main actions to archive its aim, including 14 sub-actions:
1) Strengthen and scale up the bio-based sectors, unlocking investment and markets
2) Deploy local bioeconomies rapidly across the whole of Europe
3) Understand the ecological boundaries of the bioeconomy
Action 1: Strengthen and scale up the bio-based sectors, unlocking investment and markets
This action is aimed at accelerating the development of a sustainable and circular biomass-based solution in Europe, by increasing the number of public and private stakeholders involved in the research, demonstration and implementation of bio-based solutions. This will, among other things, be achieved through the EU public-private partnership on Bio-Based Industries and launch of the €100 million Circular Bioeconomy Thematic Investment Platform both under Horizon 2020 and alongside the development of new standards and labels for bio-based products.
Action 2: Deploy local bioeconomies rapidly across the whole of Europe
The aim of this action is to develop a Strategic Development Agenda that will ensure a long-term vision and pathways to deploy and scale up the bioeconomy in a sustainable and circular way at the local level. This will include pilot actions showcasing the potential of the bioeconomy for rural, coastal and urban areas together with EU bioeconomy policy support for members state set up under Horizon 2020.
Action 3: Understand the ecological boundaries of the bioeconomy
The aim of this action is to become better at understanding and measuring the effects and impacts of local and regional biomass supply within safe ecological limits. This knowledge will also provide the foundation for other actions in the strategy and will ensure that the development of the bioeconomy is systematically monitored and reported to optimise governance and policy-making at the national, regional and local level and to ensure that it is coherent and sustainable.
Learn more about the new bioeconomy strategy here.
The projects BioBIGG and COASTAL Biogas were part of this year’s edition of POL-ECO SYSTEM in Poland.
The International Trade Fair for Environmental Protection POL-ECO SYSTEM is the largest and most important event in Poland and Central and Eastern Europe, presenting advanced technologies, solutions and products for sustainable development.
During the Workshop ‘Green Projects in the Interreg South Baltic Programme’ the BioBIGG project was presented to other Interreg projects in the region and interested stakeholders. The Interreg project ‘COASTAL-Biogas’, which is coordinated by the FNR, was presented as well.
Within BioBIGG FNR is leading a Work Package and engages in the task to build a transnational network of stakeholders in the South Baltic Region. To find out more about the ‘COASTAL-Biogas’ project, visit their homepage