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BRILIAN: A Circular Future for Rural Areas in the EU On June 13th and 14th, the launch and presentation of the European innovation project BRILIAN take place in Zaragoza.


Currently, rural areas cover approximately 80% of the European Union’s territory, containing 30% of its population (137 million people). Therefore, they play a key role in improving sustainable bio-based value chains through various lines of action, such as sustainable food and raw materials, renewable energies, reduced fossil fuel dependence, and biodiversity preservation.

The BRILIAN project has been conceived to support the adoption of sustainable and cooperative business models in rural areas, enabling a smoother transition towards bio-based economies. It plays a fundamental role in revitalizing these regions and promoting sustainable economic and social development by transforming primary producers into active players in the supply chain, aligned with the goals outlined in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), the Green Deal, and the European Bioeconomy Strategy.

With the aim of expanding the business model of agroindustries and harnessing their full potential, the project will validate ten bio-based value chains starting from cardoon, safflower, and sunflower (in Italy), potato (in Spain), and rapeseed (in Denmark) as raw materials and will develop sustainable business models encompassing a wide range of high-value-added bio-products, such as bioplastics, biolubricants, proteins, bioadhesives, bioherbicides, products for animal feed or the cosmetic sector. This will allow primary producers to diversify their income while reducing risk.

Maider Gómez, Project Manager at CIRCE and coordinator of the BRILIAN project, stated, “Finding the formula that allows the European agro-industrial fabric to develop its potential as a rural biorefinery is key to achieving sustainability objectives while strengthening the sector.”

BRILIAN is an ambitious four-year project with a budget exceeding 6 million euros, co-financed by the Circular Bio-Based Europe (CBE) joint initiative under the European program for innovation and research ‘Horizon Europe 2021-2027’ (HE). The project involves 13 entities from 6 different countries: Spain, Italy, Denmark, Belgium, the Czech Republic, and Greece, including 3 large companies, 3 SMEs, 3 research organizations, 2 clusters, and 2 associations.

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