Africa gets the first green biorefinery for sustainable food

Using locally grown grass and other pasture crops, the goal of the biorefinery is to produce high-protein feed for livestock and create new income opportunities for smallholder farmers in Uganda.

It is designed to be a step towards replacing expensive soybean imports with a high-quality, sustainable local source of protein.

BIO4Africa, comprising 13 partners in Africa and 12 partners in the EU, is a four-year project to transfer simple, small-scale and robust bio-based technology to rural Africa. Started in May 2021.

The first year was mainly dedicated to assessing local needs and contexts through surveys and workshops with farmers, farmer cooperatives and other relevant stakeholders in the four focus countries: Uganda, Ghana, Senegal and Côte d’Ivoire.

The overall objective of the initiative is to contribute to long-term improvements in livelihoods, food security and community resilience and a reduction in rural migration. Those behind the project want to empower African farmers and farming communities to produce a wider range of high-value products using local biomass.

By developing new business opportunities, the idea is that the project will help farmers do more with less and diversify their income. Circular business models will ensure social, economic and environmental sustainability.

The biorefinery is located in Fort Portal on the premises of the Kabarole Research & Resource Center (KRC), one of the 25 partners in the consortium. Another partner, the Dutch biotech company Grassa, has provided the expertise and equipment for the plant.

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