Industrial biotechnology has been identified as a key sector in the path towards a more sustainable circular economy. This is because it has the power to substantially transform industrial production in various sectors (pharmaceutical, agrifood, chemicals, cosmetics, power).
Industrial biotechnology can produce a wide range of products (chemicals, materials, food and beverages, biofuels and biodrugs) from bio-based raw materials. It can reduce environmental impact by using biomass as an alternative to fossil resources for manufacturing bioproducts, biofuels and biopolymers.
By developing fermentation techniques and using and designing new bioreactors, as well as genetic engineering techniques, we have been able to obtain products that have a huge economic impact on the industry, as they are less expensive and more environmentally friendly than their counterparts made with chemical synthesis.
Industrial biotechnology boosts productivity while using fewer resources (water and traditional chemical products) and less power. It cuts emissions (including greenhouse gases) and reduces the use of fossil fuels. It also generates less waste and is an essential tool for treating and reusing waste.
Additionally, it promotes the rural economy by creating new markets for agricultural crops, offering new alternatives for land-use and to take advantage of waste. It also allows biorefineries to be developed in agricultural areas.
Asebio believes that to promote the development of industrial biotechnology and make the most of its benefits, we have to promote sector-building measures, which include:
- Improving opportunities for producers of raw materials (biomass)
- Researching options for using new types of biomass (especially waste)
- Increasing the qualified workforce to keep industrial biotechnology competitive in Europe
- Introducing a transparent, stable framework of policies and incentives, promoting the bioeconomy and encouraging the marketability of biological products
- Improving public perception of industrial biotechnology and its products
- Promoting pilot and demo facilities in the EU
- Improving and increasing funding for demo projects and large-scale biorefineries
- Developing and improving relations between conventional and nonconventional stakeholders in the industrial biotechnology sector