"Sustainability analysis as driver for choices in a bio-based economy and a circular agri-food chain.”

The current agro-economic model supporting the western diet is pushing some of the world’s resources towards or over the planetary boundaries.

An improved use efficiency of nutrients through various recycling techniques has already taken root, but needs further optimization. However, with the current choices of feed and foodstuffs, the maximum achievable use efficiency is limited. Therefore, a shift towards other sources of protein is required to establish a sustainable food chain. To achieve a successful transition, a complex interplay of technical, economical, nutritional and social aspects needs to be considered. As part of these aspects, a good understanding of the environmental impact of the various products and processes is crucial in the decision making. 

With my PhD research, I want to contribute to this knowledge.
The Material Flow Analysis (MFA) methodology is used to quantify the nutrient and protein flows throughout the agri-food chain. Modelling protein flows via MFA is a novel approach that hasn’t been explored yet. In my research, possible ways of determining protein content and protein quality in the various flows are examined.  From this knowledge I will develop possible transition scenarios to a more sustainable agri-food value chain. This may include changes in protein production, bio-based fertilizer production or changes in consumption behaviour. The environmental benefits are then evaluated using novel methodologies that couple MFA and life cycle assessments (LCA). 

I started my research in October 2020 in the lab of prof. Vlaeminck, joining a team of passionate scientists who use microbial cleantech and sustainability analysis to help build a more sustainable future.
Before that, I worked as a software consultant for a multinational corportation, providing software consultancy on lab management, formulation and specification software for customers worldwide.


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Bijzonder academisch personeel

  • unpaid staff