Turning your fruit waste into a novel activated carbon solution

On 2 June 2022, the Belgian BISC-E competition took place at RRB 2022 in Bruges. With their innovative idea to turn your fruit waste into a novel activated carbon solution, Valorised Carbon won the national final of the Bio-based Innovation Student Challenge (BISC-E), organized by the End-of-Waste/RE.SOURCE.BIO and GREEN-CHEM networks.

Would it not be great to turn food waste into a useful product? That was what a team of UGent students (Lien De Coen, Elisa Kooy, Hanne Ponnet, Carine Van Acker and Waldo Capeau) thought when they started Valorised Carbon.

With their idea to upgrade food waste to activated carbon, they can offer a local solution to a global problem since these components are now often incinerated. Currently, the majority of activated carbon still originates from coal and lignite. To guarantee a sustainable future, waste products from the food industry such as fruit kernels can serve as raw materials for the production of activated carbon.

We look forward to seeing them compete in the EU final organised by BIC-Bio-based Industries Consortium with teams of about 10+ other EU member countries to bring home the bio based European Championship trophy. This includes a financial award of 5000€, a free one-year membership to BIC and a lot of publicity as the competition really aims to bridge the knowledge gap between students and bio-based materials.  

Hopefully this will inspire even more students and more countries to participate to the next edition of this European BISC-E competition. The goal of this competition is to move forward to actual entrepreneurship! Of course, we are here to help: if you want to start your own national bio-based innovation student competition and/or have a team of students working on relevant projects, you can contact: nathan.degeyter@ugent.be or nathalie.decoensel@ugent.be.