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The acrylamide free Superabsorbent Polymer for agriculture water footprint reduction

Project description

Protecting farms from drought

Climate impacts agriculture. Due to climate change, an increasing number of places are becoming drier and are more prone to drought. The urgent goal in the agriculture industry is to protect natural resources and reduce water consumption through its increased productivity. In this context, the EU funded Polygreen project will support a feasibility study of the PolyGreen, a superabsorbent polymer designed to reduce water consumption in agriculture. It is free from carcinogenic acrylamide and biodegradable. It can absorb excess water up to 200 times its weight to release it during the dry period resulting in a 50 % reduction of consumed water. Validating and launching PolyGreen will allow agrobusinesses to achieve sustainability at an industrial scale.


PolyGreen is a Superabsorbent Polymer (SAP) specifically designed to reduce water consumption in agriculture, being able to absorb excess water provided by rain or irrigation up to 200 times its weight and slowly release it during dry period, allowing to reduce the need of water by 50%. PolyGreen is the only SAP for agriculture that does not contain acrylamide, which is a carcinogenic material (Group B2 Probable Human Carcinogen) and will be soon banned from agriculture applications; it is completely biodegradable and behaves as an excellent soil improvers; it has a double durability and reduced price with respect to competitors. PolyGreen is a certified technology validated in the field but currently only targeting domestic or high-end applications, due the high price of 8 €/kg and handicraft production. The aim of the initiative is to optimize the production, reach a price of 3€/kg, validate and launch the product on large scale and high-water demanding industrial crops. To this aim NEST needs to: 1) optimize the supply chain and the manufacturing process; 2) validate and certify the application in specific industrial crops and validating the product price; 3) implement a first industrial manufacturing line of 1750 tons/year then scaled up of 5 times; 4) close agreements with investors and technological partners to support the investment. These assumptions will be validated and confirmed during the feasibility study.
SAP market in agriculture applications is estimated to reach a global value of 327.4 million USD by 2023, of which 30% represented by EU market considered as the Total Addressable Market (TAM) equal to 98 million €/year by 2023. PolyGreen targets to enter the mass market of industrial crops market (1 or 2 crops) in 2021 with a production capacity of 1750 tons then expanded to 10.000 tons, reaching the break-even of the 6.8 M€ investment in 2024. The turnover will reach 30 MEuro, EBIT 6.7 M€ and a cumulated cash flow of 7 M€ in 2025.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 50 000,00
Via leonardo da vinci 4
57123 Livorno (li)

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Centro (IT) Toscana Livorno
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 21 429,00