Innovative solution: FOG to Fuel  

Background: While vegetable oils are the primary feedstocks for biodiesel and other biofuel production, the rapidly-growing demand for transportation biofuels worldwide is pushing up the cost for these feedstocks. Since feedstocks can represent up to 80 percent of operational expenses for biofuel production, the use of waste fats, oils and grease (FOG) offers another option. Current solutions require 100m3+ feedstock per day and initial investments of $10 million+

Product: Downscaling existing technology to 1m3 a day 250K to open up market to smaller players (ROI 18-24month) 

Process: Collect FOG, start with mechanical cleaning (remove napkins, forks, spoons etc), separate FOG from water and solids to generate brown grease. Use chemicals, heat and pressure to convert brown grease to biodiesel in a process called esterification. Smaller processes will allow for local biofuel hubs, reducing logistics and creating biofuel where it is consumed. 

Position: The market positioning would not be “Don’t use diesel vans” making grease contractors feeling unable to do business. Rather, use your waste to create a greener resource. 

Paradigm: The local biofuel hub solves climate-related physical and transition risks and takes on the opportunities to improve resource efficiency, be part of circular economy and allowing local grease contractors to go green.

On a slightly different note, some large cooperations have to change their attitude / understanding of risk. Large PLCs often think of risk when they hear innovation (i.e., new / not tested / concept), secondly if innovation is from a small business, small business are presumed as “risky” to back as well. 

Often when given the choice between a long tested solution by a large company / plc vs. an innovation by a small disruptor. Cooperations internal culture often dictates to take the approach perceived as less risky, not taking into account, cost, cost saving opportunities and environmental benefits. 

-Daniel Damme, UK