In addition to technologies, Wageningen Food & Biobased Research also looks at the organisational, economic and environmental aspects. How can new circular value chains best be organised? Does collaboration in recycling between municipalities pay off? How do the quality and costs of the raw materials which result from recycling compare to the raw material demand?
For example, we study how much high-end raw material can actually be sourced from recycled material, but also calculate which percentage of the market demand for plastics (such as packaging) can be covered by recyclates in the coming years and which part should be covered by renewable biobased materials. The economy is growing, after all, and not all materials are infinitively reusable. Therefore new virgin raw materials still will be needed in addition to the reuse of residual and waste streams. This is why, we see the biobased economy being an important part of the circular economy.