Talent4BBI Winter School 2023

The first #Talent4BBI Winter School was a success! The complete ESR team finally met together for the first time after all relocations were finalised to their respective host institutions, with two days of workshops and talks about business cases in the bioeconomy presented by members of our institutional host, Biopolis S.L. (ADM), at the Parc Científic de la Universitat de València (Spain) between March 22 and 23, 2023.

The speakers shared examples of the potential of the bioeconomy to create business models to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and create jobs. Other topics included the importance of sustainability, public engagement, probiotics, prebiotics and postbiotics, industrial microbiology applications, efficient management of innovation projects, and omics-driven for industrial applications.

Prof. Daniel Ramón Vidal (Research Fellow Microbiome, Health&Welness – ADM Nutrition) kicked off the Winter School, talking about  the future of food and farming, using the research developed by Biopolis S.L. as an example. Iryna Biliaieva(Director of Strategic Business Development – ADM Biosolutions) presented WaysTUP! H2020, a project which aims to transform urban biowaste into biobased products, and how ADM has created value based on renewable biological resources  by commercializing probiotics and postbiotics. Moreover, Iryna conducted a workshop on business cases where the Talent4BBI team created business models of value-added bio-based products from “waste” resources from different sectors; and then pitched them to an impromptu panel of hypothetical investors composed of the program’s director, Prof. Kevin O’Connor and manager, Cathy Quinn, as well as BiOrbic’s EPE and communications manager Amanda Mathieson

The School also granted the Talent4BBI team a tour visit of the ADM facilities. Dr. Antonia Rojas (Microbiology Lab Manager, H&W Biopolis – ADM) guided the ESR’s through the laboratories and production plant to showcase  the processes for the production of Biopolis’ probiotics and postbiotics.

This week of training in Valencia offered Talent4BBI fellows time to internalise future applications of the bioeconomy within the industries where they are undertaking their PhDs.