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Exploiting algae and other aquatic biomass for production of molecules for pharma, nutraceuticals, food additives and cosmetic applications


Validate the technology for the utilisation of algae and other aquatic/marine biomass for the production of ingredients and proteins for food and feed, and of chemicals for pharmaceutical, cosmetics and nutraceutical applications.

Proposals should address upstream (adaptation and selection of varieties, growing conditions) and downstream (separation, purification and/or extraction of compounds) processing steps, with the overall aim to maximise the production of compounds of interest.

The projects should cover any Technology Readiness Level (TRL) from 3 to 5. In the case of a pilot scale project (TRL 5), proposals should present a credible cost estimate for the proposed processes with a preliminary assessment of their competitiveness when scaled up.

Proposals should also include an environmental and socio-economic assessment, for example with an LCA. In particular, when targeting TRL 5, proposals should include an LCA in order to evaluate the environmental and socio-economic performance of the developed processes. Proposals should prove their industrial application taking into account existing EU regulatory framework.

It is considered that proposals with a total eligible budget in the range of EUR 2-5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals with another budget.

Algae are important sources of specialty or fine chemicals that allow high added-value applications in several market segments. This has been possible thanks to the enormous variety in the composition of naturally occurring varieties.

Algae and other aquatic biomass thus could be excellent feedstock from aquatic/marine sources to produce chemical building blocks and materials for specific niche market applications. Exploiting aquatic/marine feedstock for the bio-based industries in principle does not claim land and does not compete with the food chain.

  • Achieved new process to separate, purify and/or extract the compounds of interest at a sufficiently high yield and low cost to allow a cost-effective scale-up of the process.
  • Achieved improved yield per mass unit biomass-input, or improved cost effectiveness as compared to current routes towards same or comparable products.
  • Contribution to the BBI JU Key Performance Indicators (KPI), specifically:
    • Set the basis for the realisation of 1 new bio-based value chain (KPI 2), new bio-based materials (KPI 5) and new demonstrated consumer products based on bio-based chemicals and materials (KPI 6), or significantly improving the production process of existing ones.
  • Safety, quality and purity of the (new) products are in line with EU legislation and proven to meet end-market requirements in order to facilitate future market access and commercialisation.