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European visitors expressed great enthusiasm for AU Foulum

Two hundred researchers and representatives from European companies got together for two days at Aarhus University (AU) in Foulum to establish the basis for collaboration in biorefining.

2016.09.22 | Nina Hermansen

A guided tour of AU’s different technology platforms for 170 visitors. A small group is shown here visiting the HTL facility, where Associate Professor Ib Johannsen explains ways of producing bio-oil from grass. Photo: Margrethe Balling Høstgaard

The food and agriculture sector is one of the areas where collaboration between research and industry is strongest. Expertise and familiarity with practical issues are worth their weight in gold for companies. In return, it is crucial for researchers that their knowledge is exploited for the benefit of industry.

The main goal of the Danish Centre for Food and Agriculture (DCA) at Aarhus University is to highlight relevant research results and facilities, thereby contributing to the development of business and society. This was the background for DCA collaborating with a number of local partners on 14–15 September, when they hosted a major international biorefining seminar.

The event attracted researchers and companies from seventeen countries, and provided visitors with an opportunity to attend a number of workshops where they were able to meet European colleagues and cultivate networks. These networks addressed issues such as new agricultural systems, the conversion of biomass to fuel and other high-value products, and the use of green biomass for producing protein for pigs and poultry.

“The event aimed to gather the best researchers and companies in each area, and take the initial steps towards setting up consortia that will look for projects in the future,” says Corporate and International Coordinator Margrethe Balling Høstgaard, DCA.

Centre for biorefining

She emphasises another and no doubt equally important aim – to demonstrate AU’s BioBase research platform, where projects have been financed for a total budget of DKK 50 million.

“The university aims to be recognised as a leader in biorefining. In connection with this seminar, we presented AU’s facilities to researchers and companies from Denmark and abroad, thereby making it clear that AU Foulum really is the Danish centre for the development of biorefining,” says Margrethe Balling Høstgaard.

Speakers at the seminar included representatives from the LEGO Concern, who talked about the need for bio-based plastic, the Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC), and the European Commission.

“It’s naturally important for AU that new financing is also obtained in the long term for the further development of the individual platforms, and this is where collaboration with industry is crucial. Companies must use the results on a large scale. A seminar like this is therefore extremely relevant, and we’re pleased to say that it was a great success,” says Margrethe Balling Høstgaard.


More information

The International Biorefining Seminar was held at AU Foulum on 14–15 September, and was organised in collaboration between Aarhus University, FACCE SURPLUS, INBIOM, Brainnovation, and the Central Denmark Region.

Read more about AU’s bio-based production research platforms:

For more information, please contact

Corporate and International Coordinator Margrethe Balling Høstgaard
DCA – Danish Centre for Food and Agriculture
margrethe.hostgaard@dca.au.dk
Landline +45 8715 1226
Mobile +45 4014 7885

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