Area of interest: agricultural and industrial biotech
Type of activity: workshop
On Thursday 28th September 2017 in Lleida, Spain, the Agrimax project attracted over 70 stakeholders from across Europe to a one-day business model innovation workshop. The aim was to create value from wastes and by-products from the agricultural and food-processing sectors.
These stakeholders included farmers and food manufacturers from the olive, tomato, potato and cereal processors industries as well as potential end-users of Agrimax products (e.g. packaging, food and agricultural materials sectors).
The workshop generated an impressive amount of data. Vibrant, constructive discussions in the room have resulted in valuable insights for realising the Agrimax supply chain. The workshop used the business model canvas to map existing and innovative ways to create, deliver and capture value for the new supply chains being developed by the project. To conclude the workshop, we looked at important external factors such as economic conditions and regulation, investigating drivers and barriers.
In Europe alone, around 90 million tonnes of food and 700 million tonnes of crop are wasted every year. Agrimax is an EU-funded project that is developing and demonstrating the production of multiple, high-value products from crop and food-processing waste. The project will develop economically competitive routes to the commercialisation of these products, using flexible, and possibly cooperatively run, processing facilities which will maximise the EU’s sustainability, while providing new bio-based compounds for the chemicals, food-packaging and farming sectors.
The Agrimax consortium would like to thank all those who took part in the workshop. The outcomes will be analysed and shared with the participants. The overall results from the workshop will complement a review of best practice for innovative circular business models and a context analysis to ensure the new business models will be successful.
The workshop was facilitated by 4Innovation Research & Consultancy Ltd., an SME specialising in business model innovation and stakeholder engagement for the circular and bioeconomy and a partner via BioVale in the Agrimax project.
What is the Agrimax project?
Four new agri-value chains from waste
An EU-funded project, Agrimax will demonstrate the potential of residues and by-products from the processing of tomatoes, olives, cereals and potatoes. The project will maximise the EU’s sustainability, while providing new bio-based compounds for the chemicals, food-packaging and farming sectors.
Flexible, multi-feedstock pilot processing plants
Two pilot processing plants (biorefineries) in Spain and Italy will use unavoidable waste from cereals, olives, potatoes and tomatoes. An online platform to coordinate the provision of waste will help maximise the use of these pilot plants throughout the year.
Cascade of high-value, bio-based products
By applying multiple processes to these waste streams, a cascade of new, bio-based compounds will be produced with applications in:
- packaging (bio-polymers, bio-composites, bio-based coatings, active packaging, stabilising agents)
- food (additives, ingredients, natural flavourings, edible coatings, microbial growth media)
- agricultural materials (biodegradable pots, mulching films, bio-fertilisers)
End users will test these products to validate their cost effectiveness and performance. Any remaining biomass will be used for biogas or returned to the land for soil enrichment.
Co-operative routes to commercialisation
Along with assessments of the environmental, social and economic sustainability of this approach, the project will develop business models for its full-scale commercial adoption by agricultural cooperatives.