Business Interaction Vouchers (BIV)

The next call for Business Interaction Vouchers will open in January 2018.

Business Interaction Vouchers encourage and support short collaborative projects between academic and industrial partners within the network. The collaboration can be any defined piece of work by an academic partner for an industrial partner. The work must be clearly defined from the outset and must be completed within 6 months.

The vouchers are worth up to £7,500 (this has been reduced from £10,000 in 2016) and are intended to help resource small confidence-building measures between an academic and industrial partner that are likely to lead to outcomes of: a longer-term relationship, improved interaction or new research technology transfer projects.

Priority will be given to proposals that, for example: aid technology transfer, work towards ‘solving’ a technical problem for an industrial partner or adapt an existing technology for a new application.

All partners in the application must be members of FoodWasteNet. Join here

Supported Activities

BIV will prioritise funding of new collaborations but may be used to fund continued collaborations. 

Projects must demonstrate a clear fit with the BBSRC Industrial Biotechnology remit.  In particular, projects that include chemical, thermal or physical separation/processing techniques must demonstrate how the work will benefit industrial biotechnology. 

The work must also be relevant to the aims of FoodWasteNet:

  • To identify and provide information on suitable feed stocks, novel products and product applications
  • To make chemicals & biomaterials with added value and market potential

Scope and aims of BIV projects

The scope of funded projects will also align with the thematic areas of the FoodWasteNet Network:

  • Raw materials - Fruit and vegetable trimmings/pulps, Vegetable oil residues, Cereal spent grains, By- products from meat, fish and dairy processing
  • Processing - Physical separation, Enzyme processing, Microbial fermentation, Systems biology, Catalysis, Thermal processing, Non-thermal processing, Chemical processing
  • Products - Bulk chemicals, Speciality chemicals, Phytochemicals, Oleochemicals, Biopolymers, Bioplastics, Food ingredients

NB Feeding trials are not within scope.

Previously Awarded Projects

FoodWasteNet has funded 16 Business Interaction Vouchers and helped 15 industrial partners to explore getting more value from a wide range of food processing wastes and co-products. The projects looked at at feedstocks including: blackcurrant skins, beetroot, potato, mushrooms, coffee grounds, rapeseed cake and bread from the sandwich industry. Potential products included: food ingredients & flavours, prebiotics, polyphenolic compounds and biofuels. Details of funded projects are available to download:

We started funding BIV projects in 2014 and we are now beginning to compile short profile/case studies to highlight the outputs and impacts of these projects. You can read our first here from Dr Ana Winters and Dr Sonia Heaven.

Dr Ana Winters - Sonication Enhanced Recovery of Anthocyanins from Blackcurrant Waste

Dr Sonia Heaven - Recovery of Food Waste from Municipal Solid Waste During Pulping

If you have received PoC or BIV funding from FoodWasteNet please get in touch if you are interested in taking part in these case studies