BIOVINO, a cross-border project in which we have participated has obtained very successful results that contribute to a circular and more sustainable economy, aligned with the the European Green Pact strategy.
Climate change, global warming and raw materials scarcity are creating a perfect storm that is increasingly threatening our society. In order to tackle this situation, the European Union signed the European Green Pact in 2019, which establishes measures for a growth both sustainable and that improves citizens health and life quality. To this end, a series of alliances are committed to reduce waste production and ensure the provision of an efficient internal market for high quality secondary raw materials.
At CETIM we are highly committed to the European Green Pact, seeking projects that feature economical, social and environmental impact. One good example, with the support of the wine sector, is BIOVINO. Its objective was to develop a cross-border strategy for the sustainable valorisation of residual biomass from wine production in Integrated Biorefineries for the production of Biofuels and Bioproducts.
The project, led by ITACYL (Technological Institute of Castilla y León) in collaboration with our Technological Centre, the University of León, the University of Minho, the University of Aveiro and the Associação BLC3, has just come to end with very successful results.
Some of research carried out in BIOVINO has consisted of making different inventories of the biomass waste generated in the target areas of Castilla y León, Galicia and Portugal. In addition, different sustainable valorisation routes have been developed for products such as vine shoots, pomace (fresh and exhausted) and excess must, among others. All this, to obtain compounds with bioactive properties, polyols or degradable biopolymers through primary or secondary biorefinery processes. Furthermore, wastewater from different processes has been treated to obtain biogas.
CETIM we used sustainable technologies based on ultrasound energy and deep eutectic solvents to obtain natural bioactive compounds derived from wine production waste. These bioactive compounds include polyphenols, flavonoids and anthocyanin pigments, whose antioxidant and biocidal activity has been evaluated.
On the other hand, the research staff of our centre valorised these wastes, from a sector with great weight in the food industry of the three regions where the project is developed (Galicia, Castilla y León and Portugal), through their biotransformation into bioplastics. These biodegradable biopolymers are being obtained through the application of microorganisms that convert the organic matter of the waste into volatile fatty acids (VFAs) in a first stage and PHAs accumulating bacteria in the following two stages of enrichment and accumulation.
BIOVINO has succeeded in developing a method for extraction and purification of biocompounds such as polyphenols, anthocyanins and flavonoids, as well as demonstrating the viability of eutectic solvents for obtaining extracts rich in bioactive compounds. We have also demonstrated that fresh pomace is a waste product suitable for the production of volatile fatty acids from acidogenic fermentation, as well as obtaining a bioplastic in the form of a biofilm from the accumulated biomass.
Projects such as BIOVINO are an opportunity to establish collaborations with cross-border partners, creating alliances that are committed to a green and circular economy, as well as generating positive impacts in the technological, economic, environmental and social sectors.
BIOVINO is a project co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund FEDER under the Interreg V A Spain – Portugal (POCTEP) 2014-2020 programme.