BioRefinery Ireland

“Sustainable development” or the careful management of natural resources and greater emphasis on renewable energy has become the catchphrase at the start of the 21st century. In Ireland, as well as elsewhere in the EU agriculture is facing many challenges, one of which is characterised by the overcapacity production of low cost biomass such as grass as animal feedstuff. To cope with this overproduction of green biomass, concepts and technologies for its alternative sustainable utilisation have to be developed. Biorefining is one such technology.

It is against this background and these challenges that Biorefinery Ireland Ltd was established in 2004 to continue the R/D began by some of its principals since 2002 under an EC Fifth Framework project entitled “Biochemicals and Energy from the Sustainable Utilisation of Biomass” – BESUB. The immediate objective of Biorefinery Ireland is to design, construct and operate a commercial green biorefinery in Ireland using herbaceous biomass such as grass, immature cereals, legumes and sugar beet as feedstock; and produce energy, biofuels and high value biochemicals with food, feed and industrial applications. The initial objective is to establish a green biorefinery using fresh grass/grass silage.