Innovation & Quality in Bioeconomy

Green business.

The European Union has recognised the strategic importance of bio-based industries in achieving sustainability goals and reducing dependence on fossil resources.

Already in 2007, with the Lead Market Initiative, the EU recognised an important role for standardisation through Mandate M/492, following which a specific European Technical Committee (CEN/TC 411 Bio-based products) was established with the task of developing standards for bio-based products covering horizontal aspects, sampling, evaluation of bio-based content, up to the application of Life Cycle and Sustainability.

The standardisation landscape of bio-based industries is a multifaceted ecosystem aimed at fostering innovation, ensuring quality, and promoting sustainable practices within this emerging sector. Bio-based industries encompass a wide array of sectors, including agriculture, forestry, textiles, packaging, and bioenergy, amongst others. Standardisation plays a pivotal role in harmonising practices, materials, and processes across these diverse domains.

Organisations such as the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN), actively engage stakeholders to develop and maintain standards tailored to the unique needs of the bio-based sector. These standards cover various aspects, including feedstock quality, manufacturing processes, environmental impact assessments, and end-product specifications. Harmonised standards facilitate cross-border trade, enhance product interoperability, and contribute to a more sustainable and competitive bio-based industry across the European landscape.

UNI – Ente Italiano di Normazione

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BIORADAR partner UNI - Ente Italiano di Normazione is the Italian standardisation institute responsible for the development and publication of technical standards. In the context of the BIORADAR project, UNI takes on a pivotal role in facilitating standardisation efforts and ensuring the alignment of project outcomes with established European and International standards.

UNI's involvement in BIORADAR is aimed at bridging the gap between project results and the market thanks to standardisation through:

  • UNI serves as a crucial liaison between the BIORADAR project and pertinent technical committees. Their role involves fostering the transfer of project findings into the realm of standardisation. This involves identifying relevant technical committees and ensuring that emerging standards that could incorporate novel developments are appropriately addressed. Additionally, UNI promotes the establishment of a liaison agreement between the BIORADAR consortium and a suitable European and/or ISO (international) technical committee, further enhancing the project's connection to standardisation efforts.

  • UNI's participation guarantees that BIORADAR's standardisation activities are in harmony with international bodies like CEN and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). This alignment is crucial for maintaining the credibility and applicability of the project's outcomes on a broader scale.

An essential aspect of UNI's involvement is exploring how project outcomes can be transformed into a pre-standardisation document known as a CEN Workshop Agreement (CWA). A CWA is a deliverable published by CEN which is designed to be the first step towards standardisation activities which can increase the impact of research and innovation projects upon the development and implementation of EU policies. In this phase, all partners with relevant expertise will contribute to the development of the document, with UNI overseeing the process, ensuring compliance with CEN procedures and rules.

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UNI's contributions to BIORADAR are anticipated to yield several significant results:

  • Development of a Bio-based Transition Indicator (BTI) framework aligned with CEN/TC 411 standards.
  • Creation of a position paper addressing data interoperability for the BIORADAR BTI data-driven benchmarking and analytics platform.
  • Provision of datasets from self-assessment tools used in three industrial use-cases.
  • Formulation of a novel "servitization" business model centred around "Circularity as a Service" (CaaS) for bio-based systems.
  • Initiation of standardisation activities for circular bio-based products/systems, which may include contributing to the development of a pre-standardisation document, a CEN Workshop Agreement, or future standardisation activities based on project results.

UNI's involvement ensures that BIORADAR's innovative findings are effectively translated into standardised practices, benefiting industries, consumers, and the environment alike.