Biotransformation of by-products from fruit and vegetable processing industry into valuable Bioproducts

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Funding: 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission, Collaborative research project
Project Duration: 01.12.2011-30.11.2015
Project Manager: Jessica Wildner

The European project TRANSBIO combines 16 research centers and companies from nine different states among which three are from Latin America.

TRANSBIO aims at the implementation of an innovative cascading concept for the valorization of by-products from fruit and vegetable processing industry.  Environmental friendly biotechnological solutions like fermentation and enzyme-conversion strategies will be used to obtain valuable bioproducts like Polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) for packaging, succinic acid as nutraceutical /platform chemical and enzymes for detergent applications.

TRANSBIO will characterize and select appropriate by-products from fruit and vegetable processing industry, followed by adapted pre-treatment and enzymatic hydrolysis procedures to obtain fermentable sugars for microbial fermentation. In order to receive a broad application potential for the selected by-products, different cultivation strategies will be investigated in the project – submerged fermentation (SmF) in liquid media with bacteria and  yeasts and solid state fermentation (SSF) with fungi. Beside optimisation and up-scaling, a down-stream processing and stabilization procedure will be developed keeping in mind economical feasibility, sustainability as well as end-product formation (intracellular, extra cellular). The procedures will be optimised for extra cellular succinic acid production in SmF using novel non-conventional yeast strains and extracelluar enzyme formation in SSF under utilisation of fungi as well as intracellular PHB formation in SmF with bacteria. The obtained PHB will be tested for their packaging application, enzymes will be proved for detergent utilisation and succinic acid will be purified for food application. Beside, original and pre-treated by-products as well as remaining biomass from fermentation strategies will be tested for their potential to be used as feedstock for biogas production via anaerobic digestion. All developed processes and products will be analysed under ecological, economical and social aspects and a life cycle assessment will be performed.

During workshops and conferences within the EU and Latin America the developed technologies and products will be presented to stakeholders from sciences and industry.

The project tis co-funded by the european commission in the 7th framework programme with nearly 3 mio euro under the grand agreement number 289603.


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