Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

The whole crop biorefinery project: commercializing agriculture

The Whole Crop Biorefinery Project developed and tested technologies for the treatment and fractionation of agricultural crops, in order to allow technical and economic assessment of new areas of utilization of whole crops, especially within the non-food area. The project has created a solid foundation for the further development of the biorefinery concept towards commercialization. By linking the primary producers (farmers) and the end use industry into a controlled production chain, the biorefinery can offer advantages both to the industry and the farmers. Industry receives only the part of the crop necessary for their production instead of buying grain, straw or fibre crops, simplifying processing and reducing the amount of process waste, thereby reducing the environmental impact of production. Being a part of a controlled production chain, the farmers can be paid according to a specific quality produced by special varieties and adjusted cultivation practices, and thereby move away from their present role as bulk producers.

The project covered the whole integrated production chain from primary producers to end user, but concentrated mainly on the following: selection of the best suited plant species based on botanical, physical, chemical and cultivation-related characteristics in relation to the utilization of the entire plant; methods for the pretreatment and storage of unprocessed or wet-separated crops to achieve maximum capacity utilization of the biorefinery; mechanical, physical and biochemical techniques for separation and refining of oil crops, protein crops, starch crops, fibre crops and various by-products. In collaboration with the technical tasks, an economic systems analysis model has been developed in order to enable economic assessments of various types of biorefineries in various regions of the European Union.

Reported by

Bioraf Danmark Foundation
Lykkesvej 17
3720 Aarkirkeby
Denmark
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