The Interreg-project “Bridging the Gap between Research and Education in the Circular Bioeconomy” (BREC) is dedicated to tackling some of the challenges associated with the transition from a linear to a circular economy. In the agricultural sector, there has been a vast technological development creating the issue of “analysis paralysis”. This phenomenon occurs when numerous new technologies are introduced at the same time, creating a dilemma for effective decision-making. BREC identifies several key technologies - such as biogas production, protein extraction, phosphorous extraction, nitrogen enrichment, biochar production, and their accompanying pre- and post-treatment processes - that are central to shift towards a circular economy.
Through a collaborative effort involving an international team of researchers and educators, one of our primary goals is to create an information bank detailing how the different technologies can effectively address specific agricultural challenges. This resource will serve as a comprehensive toolkit, benefiting agricultural schools in educating the next generation of farmers and also catering to seasoned practitioners, advisers and farmers associations.
Additionally, BREC aims to propose at least one innovative biorefinery concept that can serve as a demonstrative platform, showcasing the practical application and synergies between these varied technologies.
Our belief is that by disseminating knowledge and sharing firsthand experience concerning these new technologies, we can mitigate the challenges of analysis paralysis. Empowering the upcoming generation of farmers with exposure to the technologies is a central part of this initiative. Through BREC, our aspiration is for agricultural schools across Europe to have the opportunity to showcase what circular bioeconomy means in practice.