The CTA Innovation consultant Marta Macías has presented the EU project EXCornsEED at the International Congress of Circular Bioeconomy 2021. This event is organized by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), in collaboration with the INNOVAGRO Network, in which CTA participates.
The main objective of the congress has been to promote the circular bioeconomy in Latin America as a framework to design a strategy to face the food security challenge, the post-Covid-19 socioeconomic reactivation and the adaptation to climate change.
The EXCornsEED project aims to transform the traditional bioethanol production into a new, more sustainable biorefinery concept, in line with the European Union’s bioeconomy strategy and the Circular Economy concept, which promotes resource efficiency and sustainability.
The EXCornsEED consortium is developing and validating extraction, purification and concentration technologies applicable to biorefineries to extract proteins and other bioactive compounds from the secondary effluents for later use as ingredients in foods, chemicals and cosmetics.
Biorefineries and the circular bioeconomy
Biorefineries are those that use the logic and efficiency developed by the chemical industry based on fossil resources (refineries) to produce biofuels, bioenergy and chemicals from biomass.
Comprehensive biorefineries, i.e., those that combine product production and bioenergy, represent an opportunity to develop circular bioeconomy strategies and processes. The extraction and use of high added value compounds, from effluents, is a profitable and sustainable process. Furthermore, the use of these compounds as raw materials, rather than those of fossil origin, promotes and supports the transition to a bio-based approach.