Main research question
Can we use bio-based techniques for producing fertilisers and soil improvers from fruit and vegetable waste to move toward fully closed nutrient loops? The RUSTICA project focuses on six technologies (carboxylic acid platform, microbial biomass production, electrodialysis, insect breeding, biochar production and composting. Four European regions and one in South America work together.
A transdisciplinary multi-actor approach is used to refine the technologies and also to search for market solutions for a succesful implementation of the technologies. Several non-technical aspects are being considered, such as the legal framework, expected market developments and appropriate business models in the different regions.
The implementation of the technologies, value chains and business models must contribute to replacing 5 to 10% of the current mineral fertilizer use by circular biofertilizers at a regional level by 2040.