22 12 2022

The idea of Bioeconomy and Bionanopolys’ answer

Bioeconomy is on everyone’s lips. It describes the transformation from a fossil-based to a bio-based industry and paves the way to a more sustainable future. Bioeconomy is relevant in many areas: it is applicable to the production of pharmaceuticals, food and feed ingredients, or materials such as textiles, paper or plastic packaging. The theory sounds nice, but in reality, companies face a big challenge: sooner or later, producers are almost forced to change their production processes to a more environmentally friendly approach – and that costs time and money. Let’s find out, if an open innovation test-bed can help meet this challenge. […]

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Why do we need a bioeconomy concept?

It is obvious that the world’s population is growing steadily, but fossil resources are no longer sufficient. In addition, a growing population produces more and more waste. To help on solving these problems, a circular approach is needed that allows us to use waste as a resource on the one hand, to circulate products and materials and produce recyclable materials on the other. But of course, this romantic idea also has a downside and new challenges arise. To name just a few examples:

  • Existing infrastructure must be (expensively) adapted to implement a new concept.
  • When using natural and renewable resources, biodiversity must be preserved and we must avoid excessive resource extraction.
  • A sustainable supply chain must be ensured.

Therefore, the development of bio-based materials requires a holistic approach that not only focuses on the product itself, but also evaluates the sustainability and economics behind it.


The benefits of bionanomaterials

In the case of bionanomaterials – the central topic of Bionanopolys – the requirements are the same. Bionanomaterials are made from biomolecules, derived from specific raw materials such as biomass. These biomolecule building blocks are nanometer-scale in size and allow chemical and physical properties to be altered, making them ideal candidates for innovative and novel applications. The advantages of using these materials include, for example, lower toxicity and higher biocompatibility. This nanotechnology is applicable in many fields, such as packaging, construction, automotive, textile or cosmetics industries. But how do you find out if these innovative materials and novel solutions are suitable for your own approach? And how can you as a company, an SME or a research group with a limited budget cover the side effects and all assessments?

Let’s join forces and save time & money

The Bionanopolys Open-Innovation-Test-Bed (OITB) brings together experts in bionanomaterial development across Europe. This network offers a solution to your approach and provides a range of tailored cutting-edge technical and non-technical services, that will complement and boost your own expertise. Together, we do not need to reinvent the wheel, but we do need to leave enough room for novel ideas and innovation, while solving other issues, for which experts already exist, quickly and efficiently. Aspects such as quality control, monitoring, modelling, assessments related to safety or life cycle analysis, or any kind of business support are important for a holistic approach. All these aspects are part of the Bionanopolys service portfolio and complement the 14 pilot lines for the production of bionanomaterials that can be accessed to test a specific idea or approach. As part of the Bionanopolys project, a first test-run will be offered, where some ideas will be awarded free access to the Bionanopolys services through an open call, starting in February 2023. Stay tuned!