Twenty-one new industry members (a full list can be consulted here) were officially welcomed to BIC following approval by its governing bodies. Building on successive years of expanding membership, the addition of these new members demonstrates a sustained interest by industry in funding instruments for bioeconomy investments.
Whether they range from large, international industries to smaller, standalone SMEs or clusters, the new members span across the full geographical spectrum of the European continent, from Ireland to Estonia, Portugal to Finland, and as far afield as the United States and Brazil.
“The addition of new members demonstrates the BBI JU’s continued centrality in creating cross-sectoral partnerships and in leveraging and de-risking investments in the circular bioeconomy” says Dirk Carrez, Executive Director of the Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC) “BIC’s new members will bring an added dimension to its role in setting up new and innovative value chains, fostering new investments and stimulating jobs and growth in the bioeconomy”.
BIC’s new members also illustrate the growing interest of non-EU industries in accessing funding for investment in the European bioeconomy. Amongst the new members, there is also a marked increase in representation from the aquaculture and marine and agriculture, food & feed sectors – both burgeoning sectors of the European bioeconomy.
BIC’s ever-expanding membership will open new opportunities to create long-lasting synergies between sectors, a process which BIC membership facilitates, laying the foundations for new bio-based value chains, of which more than one hundred are expected to be created by 2020.
BIC’s growing membership is also evidence of the impact of the BBI JU and its importance in driving investment decisions, for industry, in the European bioeconomy. The numbers speak from themselves, with the latest investment figures confirming that BIC members have more than doubled their investment plans in the bioeconomy from 2.1 million in 2014 to 5.5 billion EUR in 2018, a trend expected to continue with the BBI JU’s support.
The Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC) is the leading actor for private sector engagement on the European circular bioeconomy, encompassing more than 160 industry members from sectors as diverse as agriculture, food and feed, aquaculture and marine, biochemicals and materials, forestry and pulp & paper, technology providers, waste management, brand owners and beyond. It is the only EU-focused organisation on the bioeconomy which includes multiple sectors in its membership, covering the whole value chain: from primary production to brand owners, facilitating market uptake of new innovations.