Carbohydrate conversion and processing

Developing sustainable products and technologies for a bio-based, carbohydrate-based economy

Being the major component of renewable carbon and energy resources, the importance of carbohydrates in the global sustainable society is expected to increase dramatically. Plant biomass consists mainly of carbohydrates, on average constituting up to 75% of dry weight. In short, a bio-based economy is essentially a carbohydrate-based economy. Sustainable products and production methods are the focus of this field of expertise of the Carbohydrate Competence Center (CCC).

Ways to produce cheap, fermentable sugars from biomass are explored by CCC. Subsequently, these sugars can be converted into green (platform) chemicals, new materials and bio-energy. Agriculture, horticulture and related industries that generate products and side-streams rich in carbohydrates are in the forefront of these developments. Examples are potato- , sugar beet- , corn- , wheat-  and dairy industries. Dutch companies such as Nutreco, Agrifirm and Cosun/Duynie are participating in projects designed to add value to such by-products by improving feed conversion using novel (enzymatic) processing steps.