Can waste become an alternative source of income?
Sunflowers are commonly farmed to produce oil, seeds or bio-fuel. After pressing the oil out, a part can be used as animal feed but most of the crop goes to waste. The stalk’s foamy structure, the strong fibre of the bark or the flower’s dark brown proteins are left behind. These agro-wastes can be valuable resources to produce novel biomaterials.
With the scientific expertise of regional partners, this project uses sunflower leftovers to create new applications and prototypes embedded in sustainable production systems. Entering the realm of bio-plastics, a vast number of applications of what was previously considered waste becomes possible: from a tiny bolt to a large insulation panel, from a bio-board to an iPhone case.
Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Associate professor, Laboratoire de Chimie Agro-industrielle (INRA/INP-ENSIACET)
Research engineer, Laboratoire de Chimie Agro-industrielle (INRA/INP-ENSIACET)
Domaine de L’Armelière