Several countries have published bioeconomy strategies

Ireland, Sweden, Norway, The Netherlands, and Canada are examples of countries that have created and published strategies or plans on how to meet the potentials of the bioeconomy.

Irish bioeconomy

Already in 2008, Ireland published its Foresight Report “Towards 2030 – Teagasc’s Role in Transforming Ireland’s Agri-Food Sector and the Wider Bioeconomy”.

The four pillars are:
1.    Food production and processing
2.    Value-added food processing
3.    Agri-environmental products and services
4.    Energy and bio-processing.

Download the Irish Foresight Report here
(pdf).

Swedish bioeconomy

The “Swedish Research and Innovation Strategy for a Bio-based Economy” was published in March 2012 by the Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (FORMAS).

The following research and development needs were defined:

  • The replacement of fossil-based raw materials with biobased raw materials
  • Smarter products and smarter use of raw materials
  • Change in consumption habits and attitudes
  • Prioritisation and choice of measures

The analyses identified a need for the closer involvement of users/consumers in prioritising knowledge gaps and new problem areas. Formas will therefore establish a User Forum to function as an advisory resource for those funding the research. Much of the work of implementing the strategy can be carried out within the framework of existing resources. If a major new initiative in the area is to be implemented then additional resources will be required. This presupposes that there are resources for this in state finances.

Download the Swedish Research and Innovation Strategy for a Bio-based Economy here (pdf).

Norwegian bioeconomy

Norway has published a preliminary research programme from 2012-2022 on “Sustainable Innovation in Food and Bio-based Industries”, BIONÆR.

The following cross-cutting perspectives will apply to all research activities under the BIONÆR programme:

  • Sustainable production and consumption, emissions reductions and adaptation to climate change.
  • Improved resource efficiency in new and existing biomass production and full utilisation of all biological resources in closed-loop systems. Focus on reducing food loss and discard and on using residual raw materials as a resource
  • Further refinement of existing and development of new types of value-creating cross-utilisation between resource streams.
  • Further refinement of existing and development of new processes, products and services.
  • Enhanced value creation and competitiveness in the bio-based industries, with a focus on market orientation and innovation in all segments of the various value chains.

Download the preliminary BIONÆR programme plan here (pdf).

Canadian bioeconomy

In July 2011, a “Bio-economy Committee” was formed in British Columbia, Canada.

The Committee concluded that there is an urgent need for the government to take a leading role in the further development of British Columbia’s bio-economy.

The Bio-economy Committee formulated a set of recommendations for government to hasten productive economic development of BC’s bio-economy sector. The main pillars of the recommendations are:

  1. Establish a clear, long-term bio-economy vision.
  2. Improve access to fibre and feedstock.
  3. Establish a technology development strategy.
  4. Develop markets for BC bioproducts and aggressively market BC’s advantages.
  5. Integrate the bio-economy’s infrastructure needs into provincial initiatives.

Download the bioeconomy strategy of British Columbia here (pdf).

The Netherlands’ bioeconomy

The Netherlands also has produced a bioeconomy strategy working paper with proposals to the European Commisison. The working paper of The Netherlands is focusing at
-    Integrated approach
-    The whole value chain of biomass
-    Opportunities for agriculture
-    A level playing field

(The bioeconomy working paper from The Netherlands is at the moment not available online.)

The German bioeconomy

The German BioEconomy Council released it's first recommendations in 2009 and second recommendations in 2011. It also has published a number of reports on bioeconomy potential and growth.

Read more on the German BioeconomyCouncil and its recommendations here.

Strategies on their way

Apart from the countries that have already formulated bioeconomy strategies and plans, a number of countries are working on producing their own.

For instance, the Finnish authorities are working on a bioeconomy strategy. The Finnish Forest Industries Federation has done much work on considering its role and possibilities within bioeconomy.

Read more about bioeconomy and Finland’s forestry sector here (external link).