Waste is no longer simply waste. Thanks to biotechnology, it is fast becoming a new source of resources and raw materials, and is a booming scientific field based on the use of biological systems and living organisms and their derivatives (enzymes) to create or modify certain products and processes and use them in different applications.
Biotechnology therefore enables us to recover and extract value from what is, at first glance, simply waste. It is a key ally in the circular economy that the European Union is currently implementing. Here at ITENE we know how to make the most of your waste. The following sections tell you everything you need to know about what biotechnology can do for you.
What does biotechnology consist of and which sectors does it benefit?
Biotechnology can be defined as any technological application that uses biological systems and living organisms and their derivatives to create or modify products and processes for specific uses.
This technology enables the transformation of various waste and by-products (from organic waste to packaging waste) into potential intermediate and added value products for a wide variety of industrial sectors through the use of enzymes and microorganisms.
More and more companies are seeking to harness their plastic and agri-food waste, and biotechnology gives them the tools they need to transform it into products with high added value using highly efficient, sustainable processes with low environmental impact.
Pioneering second-generation bio-refineries are being developed, i.e., industrial facilities that integrate different processes to convert waste into a series of bio-products, beyond mere biofuels, which can be used in areas such as:
- the packaging industry
- the chemical industry
- the agri-food industry
- the pharmaceutical industry
- the cosmetic industry
Which solutions do we use biotechnology for?
Isolating and identifying microorganisms and enzymes enables us to develop ad-hoc solutions for the treatment of bio-waste, thus creating new value chains within the framework of the circular economy.
- Identification and development of microorganisms and/or enzymes that may be of interest to industry
- Development of bioprocesses for depolymerisation and treatment of fossil-based plastics
- Development of downstream product purification processes
We convert organic waste into sources of new raw materials for high added-value applications in a range of areas such as the packaging, food and cosmetic industries.
- Bio-waste pre-treatment and processing
- Development of fermentative processes to produce compounds with high added value (building blocks)
- Development of downstream processes (purification and validation of upstream or midstream products)
- Identification and isolation of microorganisms and compounds of interest
- Development of bio-production processes
- Development of purification processes
- Development of formulation processes
- Viability and efficiency tests in culture chamber
- Product development and registrations
- Development of bio-augmentation processes
- Process modelling and optimisation
- Improvement of the quality and properties of the compost produced
How can I help you?
Head of the Industrial and Environmental Biotechnology Unit