Around 28% of the total area of the EU countries is covered by grassland and green shrubs. Today these resources remain underutilised, being left to decay after mowing and thus causing costs and lost benefits for individuals and society. GO-GRASS will use this overlooked potential strengthening rural communities, developing circular business models
The consortium is built around four promising regional demo sites located in The Netherlands, Sweden, Germany and Denmark which already have started to create new value chains based on unused green fodder.
The Dutch demo site uses road side grass to produce high-quality packaging and paper. In Sweden, reed canary grass is shredded and pressed into briquettes – an innovative material for animal bedding which afterwards can easily be used as fertilizer, as well as for biogas or heat production. The idyllic Nationalpark Unteres Odertal is home to the German demo site. Here grass from the wetlands is converted into biochar, which can be used as fertilizer or to enhance the soils water holding capacity. The fourth demo site in Denmark manages a small grass refinery for extracting protein from grass. The organic protein concentrate can be fed to pigs and poultry enriching their diet and to dairy cows increasing their milk production.
As the replication of the developed technical and organisational solutions is one main aim of the project, already three follower regions located in Hungary, Romania and Spain have been included into the projects structure. In the longer term the project should generate new opportunities in rural areas throughout Europe. "One fifth of the people in the rural area of the European Union are at risk of monetary poverty. With the findings of and tools to be developed by the GO-GRASS project we try to revitalize rural economies, to create new quality jobs in a circular, climate-friendly sector," says project coordinator Philipp Grundmann. To realize these ambitious aims the project is also collaborating close with other EU projects working on tools and solutions for business models (like RUBIZMO) or grassland management.
Twitter Handle: @GoGrassEU
Region Norrbotten, Region Västerbotten
Project partner, WP-leader and Swedish demosite leader
Cirka 9 MSEK
ATB Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Aarhus University, Van der Meer & Van Tilburg West, Application Centre for Renewable Resources - Wageningen University, Papierfabriek Schut, Gate2Growth, Institue for Food Studies & Agroindustrial Development, European Science Communication Institute, Zabala Innovation Consulting, Greenovate! Europe, Agro Business Park, Prospex Institute, Nationalparkverein Unteres Odertal, LMO (Consulting Company), Noardlike Fryske Walden, Glommers Miljö Energi, Västakra Gard, Asociatia Romana Pentru Agricultura Durabile, Union de Cooperativas Asociacion Galega de Cooperativas Agrarias, Okologiai Mezogazdasagi Kutatointezet Koshasznu Nonprofit