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28 April 2017

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).

21 April 2017

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.

12 April 2017

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.