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ECOFUNCO partners welcomed the third year of activities

On 23 May 2021, the seventeen partners from ECOFUNCO joined together for their M24 meeting. This virtual assembly stated the start of the third and last year of the project. 

The meeting started with the presentation of Work Package 2 on feedstock selection, molecules extraction and functionalization. The partners discussed the achievement in the selection, which involved mainly the scaling up of sunflower and lupin. The next step for this workpackage is to verify the application both on plastic and cellulosic surfaces.

The next Work Packages required further discussion among the partners as they involve many different tasks. WP 3, led by INSTM, focuses on polysaccharides based coatings and hot-melts formulation for coatings. The films developed had antimicrobial activity and showed low level of water absorption. WP4 (SSICA) defined the characteristics for cutin based coatings extracted from tomatoes, apples and watermelons. The evaluations showed good results application as bio-lacquer on cellulosic and plastic substrates and on paper packaging for personal care products. 

The work packages dedicated to scaling up and validation of results required more discussion among the partners, as they approach the next planned activities for the following 12 months of the project. In particular, WP5 led by LUCENSE will address the scaling up and validation of coating on cellulosic substrates, especially paper cups and tissues. WP6, seeing BIO-MI as WP Leader, is evaluating scaling up and validation of coatings on plastic substrates. Together, the partners defined the action plan and the selected demonstrators.

Then, the discussion moved to the life-cycle assessment and environmental, social and economic sustainability of ECOFUNCO developed products. ARCHA, in charge of this WP, is assessing both the biodegradation performances of the ECOFUNCO demonstrators and the consumer’s perception of bio-based products. 

In WP8 about dissemination and communication aspects, KNEIA presented the results of the activities performed in the last 6 months. Also, the ECOFUNCO multi-stakeholders platform recently launched was presented. The partners were also involved in the planification of the ECOFUNCO workshop on 16 June 2021, which will present some results from ECOFUNCO and BionTop.  

Overall, the partners were glad to meet again and have the opportunity connect once again all together to establish the best action plan to reach the milestones of ECOFUNCO. Also, they hoped to be able to meet in person for the next planned events of ECOFUNCO, which will be the M30 meeting (October 2021) and the final meeting in M36 (April 2022) in Pisa, Italy. 

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