Turning Rubbish Into biobased materials: a sustainable CHain for the full valorization of organic waste (RICH)
PI: Gianluca Molla and Loredano Pollegioni
Cariplo RICH project
Insect Biotechnology and development, University of Insubria (Italy)
Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
University of Milano (Italy)
Deutsches Institut für Kautschktechnologie E. V. (Germany)
Plastic pollution has become a global concern in any sector of the human society. Bio-based plastics have represented a valuable alternative since more than 20 years, but their production has relied on feedstocks that compete with food or other markets (i. e. starch, cellulose for textiles, …).
The “circular-economy” paradigm is aimed at reducing the costs of yet exploited production chains, by focusing on re-using its own wastes through new alternative routes. This, in turn, reduces the economic impact of waste management process.
The RICH project aims at unifying these two sustainability-targeting strategies: a lab scale process will be set up to obtain protein extracts of Black Soldier Fly (Hermetia illucens, BSF) larvae reared on waste biomass to produce new plastic materials, in collaboration with people from other Universities and research institutes.
Different waste biomasses to fed BSF larvae, protein extraction protocols and biochemical separation techniques will be tested to optimize the process.