The Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) was officially established under EU Council Regulation No 560/2014 of 6 May 2014. It is an independent legal entity that manages the public-private partnership (PPP) between the European Commission and the Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC). 

BBI JU governance

The Governing Board is the main decision-making body of the BBI JU. It is composed of five representatives from the European Commission and five representatives from BIC.

The Executive Director, supported by the Programme Office, is responsible for the day-today management of the BBI JU, supported by two advisory bodies, the States Representative Group and the Scientific Committee.

The BBI Programme Office is responsible for the implementation of open calls for proposals for research and innovation actions and innovation actions, as well as coordination and support actions, in line with the Horizon 2020 rules for participation. Any eligible institution may become a participant or a coordinator in the selected projects.


More information can be found on the BBI JU website

BBI JU Calls for proposals

The topics for the BBI JU Annual Work Plans are developed by the BIC Programming Working, following consultation of the two advisory bodies of the BBI JU, the States Representatives Group (SRG) and the Scientific Committee (SC), and agreement with the European Commission. The topics cover the 4 strategic orientations of BIC’s Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA).

Based on project aims and their Technology Readiness Level, development and deployment actions in BBI JU calls are grouped in two categories (Figure 2.1): Research and Innovation Actions (RIA) and Innovation Actions (IA). Innovation Actions are further subdivided into Demonstration (Demo) and Flagship (Flag) actions.

The calls also contain non-technological actions as Coordination and Support Actions (CSA).

A total of 144 proposals were submitted in response to the 2018 Call which closed on 6 September 2018.

The number of proposals for each type of action is shown below:

  • CSAs - 15 proposals
  • RIAs - 61 proposals
  • IA-Demo - 55 proposals
  • IA-Flagship - 13 proposals

The call has an indicative budget of EUR 115 million for a total of 21 topics with 11 RIAs topics, 3 CSAs, 5 DEMOs and 2 Flagships. For the first time in BBI JU Calls the RIAs include 6 RIA topics with the additional eligibility criterion that at least one participant of each consortium has to be a constituent entity of the Bio-based Industry Consortium (BIC).

The 2018 Annual Work Programme (AWP 2018) continued to focus on the need to better integrate biomass feedstock suppliers at the front end of the value chain, creating a demand for biomass feedstock from biorefining processes. Similarly, the AWP aims stimulate the building of partnerships with end market actors to create a ‘market pull’ for bio-based products for identified applications.

Strategic Orientation 1: Foster supply of sustainable biomass feedstock to feed both existing and new value chains

BBI 2018. SO1.D1 – Improve the logistical and pre-processing steps of locally sourced biomass to serve as feedstock for the bio-based industry

BBI 2018. SO1.R1 – Resolve logistical, infrastructural and technological challenges to valorise residual and side streams from aquaculture, fisheries and the aquatic biomass processing industries

BBI 2018. SO1.D2 – Find solutions to dilution, pollution and content diversity challenges to turn mixed urban bio-waste into sustainable feedstock for the bio-based industry

Strategic Orientation 2: Optimise efficient processing for integrated biorefineries through R&D&I

BBI 2018. SO2.R2 – Develop techniques and systems to improve the performance of biocatalysts

BBI 2018. SO2.R3 – Introduce new technologies to make pulping operations more resource-efficient

BBI 2018 SO2.R4 – Apply advanced biotechnologies to convert biomass that contains inhibitors into high value-added chemicals and materials

BBI 2018 SO2.R5 – Develop innovative single-step processes for conversion of a biomass feedstock into multiple readily usable intermediate streams

BBI 2018 SO2.R6 – Apply emerging breakthrough technologies to improve existing value chains

BBI 2018 SO2.R7 – Electrochemical processes for bio-based monomers and polymers

BBI 2018. SO2.D3 – Valorise sugars from the cellulosic and/or hemicellulosic fractions of lignocellulosic biomass

BBI 2018. SO2.R8 – Develop adequate computational systems for modelling the design, start-up, scaling- up and continuous improvement of bioprocesses involving microorganisms

Strategic Orientation 3: Develop innovative bio-based products for identified market applications

BBI 2018. SO3.R9 – Develop functional molecules for bio-based coatings outperforming existing products and meeting market requirements

BBI 2018. SO3.R10 – Develop bio-based packaging products that are biodegradable/ compostable and/or recyclable

BBI 2018. SO3.R11 – Develop technologies and systems to produce bio-based aromatics that outperform fossil-based counterparts

BBI 2018. SO3.D4 – Produce biopesticides or bio-based fertilisers as components of sustainable agricultural management plans

BBI 2018. SO3.F1 – Produce on a large scale competitive bio-based building blocks, polymers and materials that outperform existing alternatives in identified market applications

BBI 2018. SO3.D5 – Produce sustainable and cost-efficient high-performance functional ingredients from alternative sources

BBI 2018. SO3.F2 – Large-scale production of proteins for food and feed applications from alternative, sustainable sources

Strategic Orientation 4: Create and accelerate the market-uptake of bio-based products and applications

BBI 2018. SO4.S1 – Benefit from previous and current work to create a coherent and stimulating ‘environment’ for a sustainable bio-based industry in Europe

BBI 2018. SO4.S2 – Expand the bio-based industry across Europe

BBI 2018. SO4.S3 – Identify opportunities to promote careers, education and research activities in the European bio-based industry

The Annual Work Plan 2017 (AWP 2017) moved away from a strict biomass feedstock ‘push’ based on the traditional value chains, towards a demand for biomass to enable processing to respond adequately to a ‘pull’ from the end markets.

A total of 149 proposals were submitted in response to the 2017 Call. The number of proposals for each type of action is shown below:

  • CSA - 13 proposals
  • RIA – 67 proposals
  • IA – Demo - 62 proposals
  • IA – Flagship – 7 proposals

17 projects received BBI JU funding and were launched in 2018:

2 Coordination and Support Actions (CSAs)

  • BIOBRIDGES: Bridging Consumers, Brands and Bio Based Industry to improve the market of sustainable bio-based products
  • ICT-BIOCHAIN: ICT Tools in Efficient Biomass Supply Chains for Sustainable Chemical Production

10 Research and Innovation Actions

  • AQUABIOPRO-FIT: AQUAculture and Agriculture BIOmass side stream PROteins and bioactives for Feed, FITness and health promoting nutritional supplements
  • EXCornsEED: Separation, fractionation and isolation of biologically active natural substances from corn oil and other side streams.
  • iFermenter: iFermenter - conversion of forestry sugar residual streams to antimicrobial proteins by intelligent fermentation
  • NEWPACK: Development of new Competitive and Sustainable Bio-Based Plastics
  • Pro-Enrich: Development of novel functional proteins and bioactive ingredients from rapeseed, olive, tomato and citrus fruit side streams for applications in food, cosmetics, pet food and adhesives
  • Prolific: Integrated cascades of PROcesses for the extraction and valorisation of proteins and bioactive molecules from Legumes, Fungi and Coffee agro-industrial side streams
  • SUSBIND: Development and pilot production of SUStainable bio BINDer systems for wood based panels
  • UNRAVEL: UNique Refinery Approach to Valorise European Lignocellulosics
  • VIPRISCAR: Validation of an industrial process to manufacture isosorbide bis(methyl carbonate) at pilot level
  • WoodZymes: Extremozymes for wood based building blocks: From pulp mill to board and insulation products

4 Demonstration projects

  • EFFECTIVE: Advanced Eco-designed Fibres and Films for large consumer products from biobased polyamides and polyesters in a circular EConomy perspecTIVE
  • ReInvent: Novel Products for Construction and Automotive Industries Based on Bio Materials and Natural Fibres
  • SpiralG: Production of phycocyanin from the spirulina arthrospira sp. Revisiting the sourcing, extraction and co-valorisation of the whole algae in the frame of an industrial biorefinery concept
  • SUSFERT: Sustainable multifunctional fertiliser – combining bio-coatings, probiotics and struvite for phosphorus and iron supply

1 Flagship

  • SWEETWOODS: Production and deploying of high purity lignin and affordable platform chemicals through wood-based sugars

Launched on 19 April 2016, the €189 million call for proposals closed on 7 September 2016.

A total of 103 proposals were submitted in response to the 2016 Call. The number of proposals for each type of action is shown below:

  • CSA - 7 proposals
  • RIA – 70 proposals
  • IA – Demo - 20 proposals
  • IA – Flagship – 6 proposals

29 successful BBI JU projects have been launched in 2017:

3 Coordination and Support Actions (CSAs)

  • BiOPEN: Open innovation platform addressing strategic cross-cutting challenges
  • Pilots4U: A network of bioeconomy open access pilot and multipurpose demo facilities
  • RoadToBio: Roadmap for the Chemical Industry in Europe towards a Bioeconomy

15 Research and Innovation Actions

  • ABACUS: Algae for a biomass applied to the production of added value compounds
  • AFTERLIFE: Advanced Filtration TEchnologies for the Recovery and Later conversIon of relevant Fractions from wastewater
  • BARBARA: Biopolymers with advanced functionalities for building and automotive parts processed through additive manufacturing
  • BioBarr: New bio-based food packaging materials with enhanced barrier properties – BioBarrier
  • BIOSEA: Innovative cost-effective technology for maximizing aquatic biomass-based molecules for food, feed and cosmetic applications
  • BIOSMART: Bio-based smart packaging for enhanced preservation of food quality.
  • ECOXY: Bio-based recyclable, reshapable and repairable (3R) fibre-reinforced EpOXY composites for automotive and construction sectors.
  • MAGNIFICENT: Microalgae As a Green source for Nutritional Ingredients for Food/Feed and Ingredients for Cosmetics by cost-Effective New Technologies
  • PERCAL: Chemical building blocks from versatile MSW biorefinery.
  • POLYBIOSKIN: High performance functional bio-based polymers for skin-contact products in biomedical, cosmetic and sanitary industry
  • RefuCoat: Full recyclable food package with enhanced gas barrier properties and new functionalities by the use of high performance coatings
  • ReSolve: REnewable SOLVEnts with high performance in application and improved toxicity profile
  • SHERPACK: Innovative structured polysaccharides-based materials for recyclable and biodegradable flexible packaging
  • SSUCHY: Sustainable structural and multifunctional bio-composites from hybrid natural fibres and bio-based polymers
  • VALUEMAG: Valuable Products from Algae Using New Magnetic Cultivation and Extraction Techniques

9 Demonstration projects

  • BIOMOTIVE: Advanced BIObased polyurethanes and fibres for the autoMOTIVE industry with increased environmental sustainability
  • Dendromass4Europe: Securing Sustainable Dendromass Production with Poplar Plantations in European Rural Areas
  • EMBRACED: Establishing a Multi-purpose Biorefinery for the Recycling of the organic content of AHP waste in a Circular Economy Domain
  • EUCALIVA: EUCAlyptus LIgnin VAlorisation for Advanced Materials and Carbon Fibres
  • GRACE: GRowing Advanced industrial Crops on marginal lands for biorEfineries
  • LigniOx: Lignin oxidation technology for versatile lignin dispersants
  • OPTISOCHEM: OPTimized conversion of residual wheat straw to bio-ISObutene for bio based CHEMicals
  • SYLFEED: From forest to feed: enable the wood industry to bridge the protein gap
  • URBIOFIN: Demonstration of an integrated innovative biorefinery for the transformation of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) into new BioBased products (URBIOFIN)

2 Flagship

  • AgriChemWhey: An integrated biorefinery for the conversion of dairy side streams to high value bio-based chemicals
  • PEFerence: From bio-based feedstocks via di-acids to multiple advanced bio-based materials with a preference for polyethylene furanoate

The 2015 Call for Proposals, worth €206 million in funding from the BBI JU and additional industry investment, was split into two parts:

  • 2015.1 - Flagship Call: Launched on 19 May 2015, the €100 million Call focused on three Flagship topics – lignocellulosic feedstock, valorisation of cellulose and innovative processes for sugar recovery and conversion from municipal solid waste.

Two flagship projects kicked of in 2016:

  • BIOSKOH: Innovation Stepping Stones for a novel European Second Generation BioEconomy
  • EXILVA: Flagship demonstration of an integrated plant towards large scale supply and market assessment of Microfibrillated cellulose

2015.2 - Research and Innovation Actions, Demonstration and Support Actions: Launched on 25 August 2015, the second part of the 2015 Call worth €106 million in funding focused on Demonstration Actions and Research and Innovation Actions.

The first 3 BBI Coordination and Support Actions (CSAs) were launched in 2016:

  • BioCannDo: Bioeconomy Awareness and Discourse Project
  • BIOCOM: Increase public awareness of bio-based products and applications supporting the growth of the European bioeconomy
  • STAR4BBI: Standards and Regulations for the Bio-based Industry

11 RIA Projects kicked off:

  • BIOrescue: Enhanced bioconversion of agricultural residues through cascading use
  • EFFORTE: Efficient forestry by precision planning and management for sustainable environment and cost-competitive bio-based industry 
  • EnzOx2: New enzymatic oxidation/oxyfunctionalization technologies for added value biobased products 
  • HYPERBIOCOAT: High performance biomass extracted functional hybrid polymer coatings for food, cosmetic and medical device packaging
  • InDIRECT: Direct and indirect biorefinery technologies for conversion of organic sidestreams into multiple marketable products
  • LIBBIO: Lupinus mutabilis for Increased Biomass from marginal lands and value for BIOrefineries
  • LIBRE: Lignin Based Carbon Fibres for Composites
  • MACROCASCADE: Cascading Marine Macroalgal Biorefinery
  • NEOCEL: Novel processes for sustainable cellulose-based materials
  • TECH4EFFECT: Techniques and Technologies for Effective Wood Procurement
  • Zelcor: Zero Waste Ligno-Cellulosic Biorefineries by Integrated Lignin Valorisation

8 DEMOs received BBI JU funding:

  • AgriMax: Agri and food waste valorisation co-ops based on flexible multi-feedstocks biorefinery processing technologies for new high added value applications
  • BIOFOREVER: BIO-based products from FORestry via Economically Viable European Routes
  • DEMETER: Demonstrating more efficient enzyme production to increase biogas yields
  • FUNGUSCHAIN: Valorisation of mushroom agrowastes to obtain high value products
  • GreenProtein: Revalorisation of vegetable processing industry remnants into high-value functional proteins and other food ingredients
  • GreenSolRes: Demonstration of solvent and resin production from lignocellulosic biomass via the platform chemical levulinic acid
  • LIPES: Life Integrated Process for the Enzymatic Splitting of triglycerides
  • PULPACKTION: Optimised moulded pulp for renewable packaging solutions

Launched on 9 July 2014, the first Call for Proposals resulted in the BBI JU approving funding for ten bioeconomy projects worth a total of €120 million. To fund its share of the projects, the European Commission released €50 million of EU public money, which was combined with an industry contribution of €70 million.

Seven research projects focus on replacing fossil-based materials and products with biobased solutions:

  • CARBOSURF: Using fermentation processes to produce biosurfactants and speciality carbohydrates
  • GreenLight: Producing fibres and polymers from lignin for innovative light-weight applications
  • NEWFERT: Nutrient recovery from waste streams and residues for fertilizer production
  • PROMINENT: Protein mining of cereal side-streams exploring novel technological concepts
  • PROVIDES: New sustainable pulping technologies
  • SmartLi: Smart technologies for the conversion of industrial lignins into fibres and polymers
  • US4GREENCHEM: Pre-treatment of lignocellulosic feedstock as substrate for sugar based biotechnological applications

Two grants were awarded for demonstration projects:

  • PULP2VALUE: Processing underutilized low value sugar beet Pulp into value added products - A biorefinery system for sugar beet pulp that will extract valuable biochemicals for use in detergents, personal care, oil and gas, paints and composites
  • ValChem: Value added chemical building blocks and lignin from wood - An economicallyviable process to transform wood into chemicals

One flagship demonstration project will develop a first-of-a-kind value chain:

  • FIRST2RUN: Flagship demonstration of an integrated biorefinery for dry crops that will convert underutilised oil crops into oleochemicals