This chapter analyses the main challenges and opportunities to promote sustainable biogas technology adoption by smallholders through integrated food and energy systems (IFES), using a case study from Malonga village in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. Biogas has become attractive in recent years because of its multiple benefits and the contributions it can make to the UN SDGs. However, in Africa, its adoption remains low, due to several constraints, including: (1) water scarcity and lack of access to feedstocks; (2) high initial/upfront cost of installation and lack of investment; (3) lack of skilled labour for installation, operation and maintenance; (4) limited training facilities; (5) inadequate policy support and extension services; and (6) slow behavioural and social acceptance. Based on the information collected, integrated framework conditions that can encourage the adoption of smallholder biogas technology through IFES, were suggested. IFES will only succeed in delivering benefits, if the necessary framework conditions, such as adequate feedstock and water, training, policy support, stakeholder collaboration, credit and insurance and support services are provided. The implementation of the necessary framework conditions for biogas technology should be underpinned by conducting an integrated research study on using IFES type 2 in the context of smallholder farmers in Africa.


This chapter emphasizes the need for active stakeholder engagement right through from strategy development to planning and implementation, to realize the benefits of sustainable bioeconomy development. In general, this varies between regions and countries. In the EU, it is considered important to engage stakeholders at all stages, whereas in developing countries engaging stakeholders so far has not been given much importance when launching new strategies. Stakeholders, including the private sector, research institutions, farmers organizations, the government and non-governmental organizations, all have important roles to play. The chapter focuses on the why, how and what type of stakeholders should be engaged, and the relevant benefits and challenges. It discusses experiences from the EU and other regions where stakeholder engagement (both formal and informal) and participative governance have led to or are necessary for successful and sustainable bioeconomy development.


Mapping and valuating ecosystem services has gained increasing attention over the last years and remains high in the research agenda. In this paper, a mixed methods approach is used to valuate ecosystem services provided by the Divici-Pojejena wetland in Romania. A qualitative part relied on focus group discussions and interviews to identify key stakeholders and the ecosystem services provided by the wetland site. The benefit transfer (BT) method was used for the monetary valuation of the identified ecosystem services that the wetland provides. Bird watching opportunities, water quality, and flood prevention services are among the highest valued services, while the amenity services are the least valued among all wetland services.

Sugarcane bagasse and tractor

Division of Forest and Forest Resources

Biofuel4Kenya: Improving Framework Conditions and Skills for Private Sector Development in Biofuel Value Chain in Kenya (Biofuel4Kenya)

The main objective of the project is to develop a biofuel briquettes production and supply value chain from waste bagasse to market. Biofuel4Kenya will improve framework conditions for private sector development in the biofuel value chain, in order to boost commercial production of carbonized biomass briquettes from agro-industrial residues in western Kenya.

Active Updated: 18.06.2021
End: dec 2021
Start: oct 2018

Division of Survey and Statistics

Farmers and the city: enhancing added value and sustainability through optimized use of urban and peri-urban farm resources (URBANFARMS)

The project aims at elaborating effective strategies for professional farmers in cities and peri-urban areas to make use of the vicinity of the city to increase added value from their production in an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable way. The project shall identify land resources that are not in optimal use, and demonstrate business models that increase the use of local nutrients and of the nearby city's market and purchasing power.

Active Updated: 14.02.2020
End: mar 2023
Start: apr 2019
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Division of Food Production and Society

Climate resilient and market adapted Norwegian winter wheat production

Interest in winter wheat is growing in Norway. Climate change is expected to expand the wheat producing regions, yet warmer, wetter conditions in autumn and winter will increase soil erosion and nutrient loss risks. Soil tillage practices that protect the soil and provide optimal plant development are needed. At the same time more precise autumn fertilization strategies are needed to optimize plant growth and freezing tolerance, and reduce the risk of snow mould while minimizing nutrient losses to the environment. The variability of grain quantity and quality from year to year is a challenge for the industry to manage. In some years the supply is larger than what the milling industry is willing to use, leading to a large surplus of Norwegian winter wheat of food grade. There is a need to identify varieties and management strategies to improve the quality of Norwegian winter wheat, thus increasing the bread making market potential. More customized production strategies are also needed for the growing domestic feed wheat market. The objective of the project is to develop climate resilient production strategies to produce winter wheat that fulfills the needs and requirements of the Norwegian market. Prohøst will 1) Investigate the impact of soil tillage strategies on plant establishment, winter survival and yield, 2) Evaluate the influence of autumn fertilization strategies on plant development, cold hardening, winter survival and yield, 3) Quantify the influence of autumn fertilization strategies on development of Microdochium spp. related diseases in winter wheat, and possible impacts on grain quality, 4) Increase the utilization of winter wheat for human consumption through improved variety selection and optimal, sensor-based fertilization, 5) Identify agronomic and socioeconomic factors impacting the profitability of winter wheat production for feed and bread making, thereby allowing for more customized/site-specific winter wheat production strategies.

Active Updated: 26.05.2021
End: apr 2025
Start: may 2021
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Division of Food Production and Society

Sustainable growth of the Norwegian Horticulture Food System – GreenRoad GS35 (“GrøntStrategi mot 2035)

The main aim of GreenRoad is to deliver knowledge and solutions for increased value creation and sustainability in the horticultural food system in Norway. The project will define and prioritize areas and regions suitable for production of selected horticultural crops, assessing environmental, climatic, topographic, economic, social, legal and political constraints and opportunities for increased horticultural production, also in new regions (WP1). The environmental, economic and social sustainability of different strategies for increased horticultural production will be assessed, and new assessment methodologies developed (WP2). GreenRoad will also generate new biological and technical knowledge on methods for increased, improved, sustainable production of high quality horticultural products, taking into account provision of ecosystem services (biodiversity and pollinating activities), circularity of organic resources and the use of waste heat (WP3). The project will assess sustainable value creation barriers and opportunities at all stages in the supply chain, with a focus on seasonal labour supply, retail market structure and labelling strategies, and with Finland as a contrasting case. Business and policy measures to increase consumption of fruits and vegetables will be identified (WP4). Partners and stakeholders will be involved throughout the project in focus groups and other forms of participatory research, and their feedback will contribute to develop innovation platforms and pathways towards GS35 (WP5). A case study on apples binds the different WPs together with a “farm to fork” perspective. The project involves a variety of different disciplines (biology, geography, economy, sociology…) who will collaborate in different WPs. There is a strong involvement of business and national and international research partners.

Active Updated: 10.06.2021
End: dec 2024
Start: jan 2021