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InnProBio - eNewsletter
Issue #4 April 2017

Dear colleague,

We are pleased to send you the fourth edition of the InnProBio e-newsletter! Since the start of the project, the InnProBio team has been working to develop a community of public procurement practitioners interested in innovative bio-based products and services. Thanks for being part of it.
This newsletter provides an update of the progress so far, as well as some of the latest news on bio-based products and public procurement.

Happy reading!
Your InnProBio team

In this issue

  Project news

  Other news

  Upcoming events

  Project news

InnProBio workshop and market dialogue in Bonn

The InnProBio consortium will host a workshop and a market dialogue on public procurement of bio-based products and services targeting public procurers and suppliers. The event will take place on April 25th, in Bonn (Germany) and is co-organised with the German Competence Centre for Sustainable Procurement.

The goal of the workshop is to explore the steps of public tendering particularly regarding public procurement of bio-based products and services. The InnProBio team will share case studies, tools and criteria used in public tenders to start the discussion and present previous experiences. The market dialogue event aims to also identify barriers to purchasing bio-based products and services. Suppliers and public procurers will be encouraged to talk about their needs, demands and challenges. This shall enable public purchasers to gain a better understanding of the market and the solutions available, whereas suppliers will get to know what criteria and requirements are important to procurers.

Both the workshop and market dialogue sessions will be held in German. Attendance is free of charge however prior registration is needed. For further information, click here.

The InnProBio team recently organised a workshop on green public procurement and innovative bio-based products and services at the University of Lodz (Poland). More details are available here.

Image copyright: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain


Purchasing hot drinks made from bio-based cups

The first good practice case study resulting in a purchase of a bio-based product has just been published by the InnProBio team. The case study details the process that was undertaken by the Dutch national government to purchase cups for one of their hot drink vending machines, whereby a preference for a cup made from bio-based materials was given.

The case study opens with an explanation on how public procurement is managed in the Netherlands and also the policy background supporting the preference for bio-based products to support the development of the bioeconomy. The intention behind this particular purchase was to stimulate the supply of bio-based products and also encourage further innovation of these products in the not too distant future. The environmental characteristics of the product purchased as well as its end of life – how it should be disposed and further processed – were points that were strongly considered in the contract award. A number of lessons learned are also presented in the case study.

The good practice case is the first in a series of four case studies on public procurement which will be published during the course of this year through the InnProBio project. These aim to provide a further source of information to the public sector in support of their purchasing actions and approaches. 

To read the full case study, visit here.

Image copyright: Unsplash / CC0 Public Domain


Bio-based products and services as part of the circular economy

Does encouraging the public procurement of bio-based products also contribute to fostering a circular economy? A new factsheet published at the beginning of April through the InnProBio project has specifically addressed this very question. The factsheet focuses on how bio-based products and services fit into the circular economy, and also introduces the circular economy and circular procurement in broader terms.

The circular economy focuses mainly on the efficient use of finite resources and ensures that those are reused or recycled as long as possible. The bioeconomy uses renewable resources (that is, biomass, such as plants, trees or animals) instead of fossil resources, and can provide products that contribute to the enhanced circularity of our current economic model. As products reach their end of life, assumptions are usually made on the capacity of bio-based materials to be circular. What are the end-of-life options available? The factsheet also gives special attention to bio-based plastics and recycling.

This new factsheet is available for download from the InnProBio website. It is the fourth in a series of factsheets published in the framework of the European InnProBio project. The  other factsheets – ‘What are bio-based products?’, ‘Sustainability of bio-based products’, and ‘Biodegradability: Exposing some of the myths and facts’  are available also in Dutch from the same page.

Image copyright: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain


Discussions continue in the Procurement Forum

Members of the “Bio-based products and services – InnProBio project” group have continued to share information, latest news and other relevant resources during the last months to increase their understanding of the bioeconomy and purchasing bio-based products.

Different national strategies to push the bioeconomy, from countries like Italy, Spain and France, have been put forward to group members to check resemblances and differences. Initiatives to mainstream the bioeconomy have also been commented, amongst others, the first bio-based pop-up shop in the Netherlands that opened its doors in Bergen op Zoom to illustrate the many possibilities that bio-based materials offer. Members have also posted information on free online courses and webinars related to the bioeconomy, and specific cases to get inspiration from. For instance, information on the first bio-based rail car coating or leather produced with food waste has been shared.

The InnProBio group on the Procurement Forum is a community of practitioners engaged in the topic of innovative bio-based products and services. To join the group visit here.

Image copyright: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain


  Other news

Feedback from public procurers needed to develop new guidance

The project 'Development of a guidance document for bio-based products in procurement' to be used by public authorities based in the European Union aims to support the decisions and processes of public procurers and other persons involved in green public procurement. A range of informative materials are available on the project’s website - www.biobasedinprocurement.eu – such as factsheets addressing food, catering and events; infrastructure construction materials; building construction materials; cleaning, hygiene and sanitary products; gardening and landscaping; furniture and indoor interior; vehicles and mobility; clothes and textiles, and ICT and office supplies. The project has been commissioned by the European Commission.

To make the guidance developed through the project as practical as possible, feedback is currently being sought from people involved in procurement in order to assess the needs of procurers so that these can be tailored to the bio-based products and services sector.

To complete the online questionnaire, visit here.


Review of bio-based products available in France

The French report ‘Recensement des produits biosourcés disponibles sur le marché et identification des marché publics cibles’ reviews and identifies bio-based products available (supply-side analysis) and opportunities for an increased public use of bio-based products (demand-side analysis) in France.

Methods to take into account a product’s bio-based nature in public procurement procedures are also presented in the report, and suggestions of future courses of action to foster the procurement of bio-based products and their related services are also provided. The results provide public buyers with benchmarks for the sourcing of bio-based products and the drafting of public tenders.

The report was published by the Directorate General for Enterprises, which is part of the Ministry for Economy and Financial Affairs, and can be downloaded here (in French).

Image copyright: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain


Rewarding sustainable and innovative purchasing practices

ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability has launched the 2017 Procura+ Awards, which reward sustainable and innovative public procurement leading to significant improvements in public goods, services, processes and infrastructure.

The Procura+ Awards highlight sustainable and innovation procurement and tender procedures. The competition gives visibility to the most dynamic, forward-looking and innovative public authorities and their actions in this field.

The 2016 edition of the Procura+ Awards saw the City of Copenhagen (Denmark), Transport for London (United Kingdom) and the Dutch Ministry for Infrastructure and Environment win awards for Sustainable Procurement of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the Year and Tender Procedure of the Year, respectively.

The 2017 Procura+ Awards ceremony will be held at the Third Major eafip Event on Innovation Procurement in Tallinn (Estonia) on 17 October. Winners will be featured in a variety of ICLEI publications and online platforms, and at the next EcoProcura conference.

For more information and to download an application form, visit the Procura+ website.

Image copyright: Bill Watts


  Upcoming events

Plant Based Summit 2017

The 4th edition of the Plant Based Summit is meeting point dedicated to the development of growing opportunities in the bio-based chemical market.  It will gather decision-makers from the bio-based industry and act as the convergence platform shaping the future for the sector.

25-27 April 2017
Lille, France
Link: www.plantbasedsummit.com


10th International Conference on Bio-based materials

The 10th International Conference on Bio-based Materials is aimed at providing international major players from the bio-based building blocks, polymers and industrial biotechnology industries with an opportunity to present and discuss their latest developments and strategies.

10-11 May 2017
Maternushaus, Cologne, Germany
Link: bio-based-conference.com  


6th International Bioeconomy Conference

The motto of this edition of the International Bioeconomy Conference is “Circular Bioeconomy. Bio meets Economy – Science meets Industry”. The event will bring together internationally renowned representatives of science and industry to discuss the latest research findings, innovations and current developments on the market.

10-11 May 2017
Halle, Germany
Link: www.bioeconomy-conference.de/index.php


8th International Scientific Conference ‘RURAL DEVELOPMENT 2017: Bioeconomy Challenges’

The 8th International Scientific Conference ‘RURAL DEVELOPMENT 2017: Bioeconomy Challenges’ seeks to provide scientific interdisciplinary discussion and to share new ideas for sustainable rural development in the context of Knowledge, Innovations and Social Progress. The scope of the Conference covers four main areas: Biosystems Engineering and Environment, Agro-innovations and Food Technologies, Multifunctional Approach for Sustainable Use of Natural Resources, and Social Innovations for Rural Development. 

23-24 November 2017
Kaunas, Lithuania
Link: www.ruraldevelopment.lt/

InnProBio - partners