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Leibniz-Innovationshof emerges as a “showcase for the bioeconomy”

Luftaufnahme der LVAT in Groß Kreutz

A unique nationwide model farm for a sustainable bioeconomy with agriculture and biorefinery is the goal of the “Leibniz-Innovationshof for sustainable bioeconomy”. The lighthouse project, which is funded with 25 million euros as part of the Brandenburg Future Investment Fund, will be located at the Lehr- und Versuchsanstalt für Tierzucht und Tierhaltung e.V. (LVAT) in Groß Kreutz, Brandenburg. To kick off the project on February 24 and 25, 2021, the Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomics e.V. (ATB) as the lead institution invited representatives from 13 Leibniz institutions, 5 universities as well as the Ministry of Science, Research and Culture (MWFK) and the Ministry of Agriculture, Environment and Climate Protection (MLUK) to the virtual kick-off. The Leibniz Innovation Court is intended to serve as a showcase of bioeconomic opportunities for the public and to increase the visibility of research on climate-friendly, sustainable biomass production and use. The funding is provided by the MWFK.

“Together we want to research, develop and practically test innovative concepts and technologies that are necessary for the realization of a sustainable bioeconomy. This involves making better use of natural resources here in the region of Brandenburg and jointly developing a holistic approach to a sustainable biobased circular economy. In this, sustainable agriculture, healthy food, biobased materials and residue management are optimally linked with each other, and the biomass produced thus remains in the cycle for as long as possible, adding value,” said Prof. Dr. Barbara Sturm, Director of the ATB, in her welcoming address. The idea for this model farm was born during the Leibniz Strategy Forum on the conflicting goals of sustainable biomass production. Despite locally specific and global challenges, the Brandenburg region offered special opportunities for a transformation towards a sustainable bioeconomy, for example due to a high density of research institutions and a strong agricultural and food industry as an important part of the regional economy.

“We want to realize something that in the end also benefits the farmer, just as the consumer as a buyer of the products is also part of it,” said the managing director of LVAT, Detlef May. The Lehr- und Versuchsanstalt für Tierzucht und Tierhaltung (LVAT) in Groß Kreutz is currently already cooperating with numerous research institutions and is to be expanded over the next five years. The concrete objectives of the Leibniz-Innovationshof are resource-saving plant cultivation, animal-friendly and modern livestock farming, the regional production of healthy food, the use of residual materials for a variety of bio-based materials and energies, the promotion of biodiversity in agriculture, and new business models and income opportunities for farmers. A central element of the project is the intensive dialog with all stakeholders and consumers.

The kick-off meeting provided an opportunity for the project partners to exchange ideas, develop new research ideas and plan the next steps to realize the ambitious project.