Grassification | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën


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Priority Axis

Resource Efficient Economy

Specific objective

Circular Economy

Lead partner

Ghent University


Start Date


End Date


Project budget

4 421 518

ERDF amount

2 522 975

ERDF rate



    Common challenge

    Roadside grass clippings are a problem fraction throughout the 2 Seas Programme area due to their high volume, subject to high processing costs. The industrial sector, however, is interested in the possibility of using roadside grass clippings as an alternative resource (as opposed to fossil sources or dedicated agricultural produce).

    The common challenges for applying roadside grass clippings as a renewable feedstock in industrial processes are currently threefold:

    1. the supply chains are not yet optimal, resulting in higher costs
    2. a highly variable and heterogeneous supply
    3. an unsupportive institutional framework leading to legal and political challenges

    The opportunities to be addressed by the Grassification project can thus be situated at different levels of the roadside grass clippings value chain, hindering altogether the use of grass clippings by the industry as a renewable resource (and thus hampering the pursuit of a biobased and circular economy).

    Main Achievements

    The Grassification project aims at valorizing roadside grass clippings. In a transborder cooperation between Belgium, the Netherlands and the UK, 13 partners want to transition towards the use of roadside grass clippings as a renewable resource for the production of biobased products.

    The whole value chain for grass clippings valorization is being assessed, starting from the optimization of the input material to the obtaining of final products up to the techno-economical assessment of the entire process and the development of policy recommendations.

    A public procurement model is being developed with the collaboration of Belgian and British partners in order to increase the quantity and quality of the grass clippings available.

    A new mowing head was developed for reducing the amount of sand content in the grass clippings, thus increasing their potential for further processing.

    For the bulk processing of the grass clippings, a 700 T cell was constructed in the landfill of Vanheede for biogas production; the first batch was successfully conducted and the second batch is currently on the way.

    The high-quality grass fibers are also being tested for the production of building panels and bio-composites, and several prototypes containing grass fibers, including a ‘cardholder’, have already been produced.

    The liquid fraction obtained from the pressing of grass clippings was tested for the production of biogas, fertilizers, proteins and feed (using insects and microalgae). Biogas production was successful, however with a low output of methane per ton of liquid fraction. The use of the liquid fraction as fertilizer and as insect feed proved to be challenging, and new tests are planned for 2020 to better assess the potential of these applications; however, the liquid fraction proved to be a good nutrient source for the growth of microalgae.

    All of these potential pathways have been inserted in a product flow diagram, which forms the base for the techno-economic assessment. The set-up of the supply chain optimization model has been started and, thanks to the transnational character of the project, the collection of data across the three regions is being conducted and a policy roadmap is being made. Based on all these results, the Grassification project will reinforce institutional framework conditions, necessary to make the shift towards recycling and preventing the loss of valuable material.



    Province of West Flanders

    Pro Natura

    Flemish Institute for Technological Research


    University College Ghent

    Vanheede Landfill Solutions NV

    Kent Wildlife Trust


    Delphy BV

    Avans University Applied Science

    Innec CVBA

    Canterbury Christ Church University



    URL / Download

    Novel mowing head tested and validated in an operational relevant setting for the target audience and proven market readiness.

    Theme: Circular economy - Renewable energies
    Type: Physical equipment/pilot
    Target: Local, regional and national authorities - Nature management organisations - SMEs /enterprises

    Stakeholder report published on technical feasibility chemical properties, growth test, legal compliance, technical future compliance

    Theme: Circular economy - Renewable energies
    Type: Feasibility study
    Target: SMEs /enterprises - Universities and research centres