Food Chain Sustainability

The focus of the theme is to develop a holistic understanding of food chain sustainability, and harmonise relevant indicators for Irish food production and consumption that are applicable to all stakeholders as part of their ongoing drive to achieve a safe, sustainable and secure food supply.

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AgroCycle will focus on the development of a sustainable bio-economy underpinned by the agri-food sector. The AgroCycle protocol aims to deliver a 10% increase in agricultural waste valorisation by 2020.

AGROCYCLE will aim to develop and demonstrate a protocol to deliver a 10% increase in agricultural waste valorisation by 2020 and contribute to the European policy target of reducing food waste by 50% in 2030 as well as contributing to enhance greater sustainability in China in this field. The project, funded under the H2020 Research Programme will be lead by Prof Shane Ward.


What will be done?

  • Understanding and mapping the agri-food waste streams and finding out the various valorisation pathways with their high-value products
  • Optimised design for multi-feedstock biofuels production with higher conversion yield and improved functionalities
  • Optimised biofertilisers production and use
  • Development of a generic modular design for valorisation and reuse of nutritional wastewaters from the agri-food processing industries
  • Integrated, flexible multi-feedstock extraction of proteins, fibres and SPMs from horticultural waste
  • Implementation of a multi-actor joint stakeholder platform for knowledge exchange
  • Definition of sustainable value chains and new models for business

Funding Agency

EU Framework Programme: H2020


The project has 25 partners from the EU, Hong Kong and Mainland China.

The objective of this project is to develop a universal microarray chip as an efficient, sensitive, robust and inexpensive alternative to existing technologies to monitor various aspects of water quality and ensure the control and prevention of diseases caused by waterborne pathogens and algal toxins.


Waterborne diseases pose a significant threat not only in the developing world but also in the developed world, where "boil water" notices are common in many regions of Europe, including areas of Ireland. It is important that techniques to identity and monitor the pathogens and toxins that can cause these diseases are not only robust but are timely and cost-effective.

This project will design and develop a universal microarray chip for the high-throughput detection of known and emerging pathogens and other contaminants in water. Compared with current traditional monitoring and analytic techniques, this new technology will be energy efficient and allow rapid response times.

Funding Agency

EU Framework Programme: FP7


The project has 12 international partners including UCD. Details of the partners are available here