MainstreamBIO’s Report on context and needs of rural stakeholders

Project newsMainstreamBIO’s Report on context and needs of rural stakeholders

MainstreamBIO’s Report on context and needs of rural stakeholders

MainstreamBIO employed a comprehensive mixed-methods strategy to thoroughly examine the requirements, socio-economic backdrop, and framework circumstances in 7 European countries: Bulgaria, Denmark, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. The primary goal of the research activities was to develop individual profiles for each focal region, compiling the acquired knowledge on the needs, perspectives, and socio-economic contexts of farmers. The analysis encompassed various exploratory measures, such as focused desk research, semi-structured interviews with 35 experts, and an online survey to gauge the awareness levels and perceptions of the bioeconomy and biobased solutions among a wider range of stakeholders.

The findings indicated significant progress of bioeconomy development in Denmark, Sweden, Ireland, Spain, and the Netherlands. However, progress in Bulgaria and Poland has been comparatively slow. Respondents identified existing prospects in areas such as biofuel, agriculture, forestry, and biorefining production. Furthermore, a crucial aspect emphasized was the necessity for effective communication with consumers to establish trust and acceptance of biobased products and solutions. Despite these positive aspects, there are still major obstacles to overcome, including high costs, public resistance, and uncooperative regulations.

Survey results displayed a high-level of acceptance and positive attitude towards biobased market among stakeholders in the targeted countries with some exceptions (Poland, Ireland). Additionally, familiarity, prices, availability, and trust in certifications vary from a country to another as each country has its own perception on the topic. The main results for two countries (Ireland and Denmark) are presented in this article.

Ireland’s perception levels on biobased solutions (Figure 1) shows almost 30% of interviewees “strongly agree” they have sufficient knowledge on biobased solutions against little more than 10% for Denmark. On the other hand, Denmark’s perception levels (Figure 2) expresses that almost 30% of interviewees “strongly agree” farmers in their regions are highly engaged in nutrient recycling practices versus a bit more than 5% in Ireland.

Figure 1. Ireland's perceptions levels on biobased solutions

Figure 2. Denmark's perceptions levels on biobased solutions

Moreover, results from the analysis showed a relative uniformity in the needs of stakeholders across targeted regions from finance to overall infrastructure with a specific call for the promotion of supporting regulatory (except Spain- Catalonia, Denmark and Ireland).

Figure 3. Ireland's needs in terms of business support services

Figure 4. Denmark'ss needs in terms of business services

About the level of awareness and application of nutrient recycling practices, stakeholders in most countries are familiar with composting, but results vary for other practices. Interesting point, a majority of countries supports the use of digital tools, such as MainstreamBIO’s toolkit, to facilitate the adoption of biobased solutions.

Finally, factors facilitating the uptake of biobased solutions and bioeconomy development highly depends on the current state of each region.

Moreover, the results of D1.2 will assist the co-creation of the support services that will be provided to farmers and other key actors of the biobased value chain in later stages of the project.

For more information about each focal region please read the D1.2 “Report on context and needs of rural stakeholders” (currently under review), click here.


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