This year Avebe is celebrating its hundredth anniversary! That means looking back, but also ahead. For example, what does the factory of the future look like? Avebe invites students from higher and scientific education to come up with ideas about this. The best design will win a year's tuition fees. So students on Campus Groningen, grab your change!
Avebe's factories were set up more than 100 years ago for the production of potato starch, and the production of high-quality protein was added later. This biorefinery process is by definition a process that uses a relatively large amount of energy, water and sometimes also chemicals. Effective, but perhaps not always efficient with a view to the future.
Avebe asks students to come up with innovative ideas, based on a greenfield principle: what if you were allowed to completely rebuild a factory? Which techniques and which sequence would you apply to maximise the value of the ingredients from the potato, with minimal use of energy, water and chemicals?
Registration is now open on https://www.avebe.com/student-challenge/ and closes on September 9th. The call for proposals is open until 30 October. An expert jury will then evaluate all the ideas. The three best entries will be invited to present their plan at the new Innovation Centre in Groningen during the Avebe Anniversary Day in November. On that day, Avebe will also announce the winners of one year's tuition fees.
Avebe is a cooperative of 2,300 arable farmers in the Netherlands and Germany. Each year, the starch potatoes of those members are processed into high-grade ingredients based on potato starch and protein; they add value to food products but also to industrial applications worldwide. Avebe works continuously on developing new opportunities and applications based on starch potatoes and is focused on sustainable continuity. The company has 1,300 employees and production sites in the Netherlands, Germany and Sweden and sales offices in the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. The Head Office is in Veendam. In 2018, Avebe opened the new Innovation Center on Campus Groningen, location Zernike Campus.
Copyright photo's: Header Campus Groningen, photographer Geert Job Sevink. Detail factory: Avebe.