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Successful Completion of the Subsidie Circulaire ketenprojecten

We are delighted to announce the successful completion of the Subsidie Circulaire ketenprojecten, a project subsidized by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland).

Project Overview:

Title: Locally Grown Nettle as a Basis for Bioplastics and Crop Protection

The project focused on creating a supply chain in the Netherlands for locally grown nettle crops to be used as a basis for bioplastics and natural crop protection products. The initiative brought together five partners across the supply chain, from primary production to the end product user, a cargo bike manufacturer. The goal was to establish an initial supply chain that could serve as a foundation for a fully circular chain using Dutch-grown nettle crops.

Key Activities:

- Experimental Cultivation: Conducted a trial cultivation of 500m² of nettle, which was processed by various chain partners.

- Biological Crop Protection: Utilized the liquid fraction of the nettle for producing a biological crop protection product that functions as a biostimulant and insect repellent.

- Biomaterial Production: Used the fiber fraction for manufacturing filament and granulate as the basis for biomaterials, which serve as components for cargo bikes.

- Production: Achieved the first trial production of 25 cargo bike parts and a trial cultivation of 500m² of nettle crops.

Goals and Outcomes:

The project's goal was to align all specifications within this supply chain and establish a sustainable collaboration among the five participating parties. This effort aims to lead to a pilot factory for nettle composite in the future. The project contributes to reducing both CO2 emissions and the use of fossil resources currently employed in conventional plastic manufacturing. Replacing each kilogram of plastic with nettle-based biocomposite saves 6 kg of CO2-equivalent and 60 MJ of fossil resources. A pilot factory for nettle composite is projected to save 180,000 kg of CO2-equivalent and 1,800,000 MJ annually, with future large-scale factories potentially saving 600,000 tons of CO2-equivalent and 6,000,000 GJ annually.

Our Partners:

- Compas Agro B.V.: An advisory and research firm in the agricultural sector, founded by Ronnie de Hoon and Dirand van Wijk, bringing over 20 years of experience.

- Carnola: A cooperative growers and trading association based in North Limburg, managed by Pieter Hermans, Joep Hermans, and Wilbert Heldens, all primary sector entrepreneurs.

- Materials Factory (Labii Holding BV): An R&D company specializing in material and process development, founded by Lawrence Batenburg.

- Holland Cargo Bikes: A manufacturer of sustainable cargo bikes, with modular designs that are 92% recyclable, originally conceived in Denmark and produced locally in various parts of the world, founded by Harold Vreuls.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all partners for their collaboration and contribution to the success of this project. We look forward to continued cooperation and further advancements in sustainable practices.

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