Forestcluster Ltd. launches a new research programme
Future Biorefinery, a research programme by Forestcluster Ltd., will create a
new national competence platform in processing of wood biomass and thus,
stimulate the transformation of the forest cluster. VTT is strongly involved
in the research and development work of the programme.
(Press release of the Forestcluster Ltd on 2nd March 2009)
Future Biorefinery, or short FuBio, is a five-year programme with a total
budget of about 50 million euros, financed by the shareholders of
Forestcluster Ltd. and by Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and
Innovation. At the end of February, Tekes made a funding decision of about 9
million euros for the first two-year period of the programme. This is
approximately 50 percent of the total budget.
“The research programme aims at generating innovations that can either be
implemented as a part of existing industry operations, or which open up
entirely new wood-based value chains,” said Christine Hagström-Näsi, CEO,
Forestcluster Ltd. “Bioplastics, new composite materials and various
bio-chemicals are examples of potential new end-products.”
A unique entity
The research programme of Forestcluster Ltd. is part of a broader Finnish
effort to develop new biorefining competencies and technologies, under the
umbrella of the Tekes BioRefine programme launched in 2007. This entity
harnesses an extensive network of national research institutes, universities
“This kind of collaboration in studying biorefining is internationally unique
and is playing a pioneering role in the world, not least because Forestcluster
Ltd. and Finnish companies have taken up the challenge and are making such a
significant contribution,” said Jukka Leppälahti, the BioRefine Programme
Manager at Tekes.
“By 2012, biorefining activities will be under study in Tekes-financed
projects to a volume of about 200 million euros.”
Forestcluster Ltd. coordinates the operations of the Finnish forest cluster’s
strategic centre for science, technology and innovation. It is backed by all
key companies and players in the Finnish forest cluster.