The applicants propose the development of a sound industrial process that unites the urgently needed solution of industrial waste problems with the creation of essential alternative strategies for polymer industry. This will be done by the biotechnological conversion of waste streams from slaughterhouses, rendering and biodiesel industry towards biodegradable polymeric materials. Slaughterhouse waste is converted towards fatty acid esters (FAMEs, biodiesel).
Subsequently those FAME fractions that negatively influence the biodiesel properties as a fuel are biotechnologically converted towards high-value polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) biopolymers. This brings together representatives of the envisaged lead users: waste producers from animal processing industry and bio-fuel industry with the polymer industry looking for alternatives technologies. Providing long-term strategies for long-term problems, the project will result in value creation for all players and provide innovative biotechnological approaches for absolutely needed eco-efficient alternatives to contemporary industrial polymer production. The development of this integrated process will be accomplished by beyond the state-of the-art inputs of microbiology, genetics, biotechnology, chemical engineering, polymer chemistry- and processing and life cycle analysis, combined with feasibility studies for marketing of the final products.
The compiled Consortium absolutely conforms to the requirements to fulfill the envisaged project aims. Research will be done in close cooperation between academic and industrial partners. The project activities aim at solving local waste problems affecting the entire EU; the solutions will be developed on local scales, but are meant to be applied to the entire EU and will provide cost-efficient and sound alternatives for polymer industry.