European biotechnology makes plastics from plants

Plants and wood species contain a lot of useful biomass, which we can use to develop useable plastics. Through the European BioConSepT project, VITO helps research how this can be done in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Today, biotechnological companies have already succeeded in using non-edible plant oils and wood species as biomass, purifying valuable substances, and using them to produce, among others, bioplastics. The European consortium involved in BioConSepT wants to bundle and refine this expertise, in order to create a wider spectrum of useable bio-resources and innovative production techniques. Their aim is to prove that this approach is 30% cheaper and more sustainable than traditional chemical paths.
 

VITO's role

VITO specialises in bioconversion, separation processes and the combination of both to convert biomass streams. This expertise was implemented and further enhanced to come to the most efficient way to produce organic acids. Through the BioConSepT project, VITO wants to contribute to the transition to a bio-based economy and convince companies to invest in sustainable biotechnology.

BioConSepT: Facts & Figures
  • Partner project between 31 European partners in 13 countries
  • Part of the European Seventh Framework programme
  • Duration: Jan 2012 - Jan 2015
  • Budget: €13,000,000, of which the European Union contributes €8,900,000
     
The approach is 30% cheaper and more sustainable than traditional chemical paths.