Innovative cost-effective technology for maximizing aquatic biomass-based molecules for food, feed and cosmetic applications


EU society needs new sustainable bio-based feedstocks to meet population growth and reduce dependence on fossil fuels for raw materials; almost 70 percent of the EU’s protein needs are imported. Aquatic feedstock offers a potential solution, however its total production volume and market size are still relatively small.

In addition, the algae feedstock market is still relies on immature technologies for production and technologies not specifically designed for the purpose. The BIOSEA project aims to validate and scale up an entire production process of ingredients from the lipid, protein, carbohydrates and minority compounds fractions of four algae, including upstream and downstream steps.

The BIOSEA process will be effective and environmentally friendly and the compounds will be obtained at low cost, leading to the future industrialisation of the process.



BIOSEA will pursue the following specific objectives:

  • Develop and validate innovative, cost-effective and environmental friendly processes or cultivating two microalgae and two macroalgae to produce and extract high value active principles at low cost for food, feed and cosmetic/personal care use.
  • Improve the cost effectiveness of the production of ingredients for comparable products by 55 percent over to current routes by using algae.
  • Improve the yield per mass unit of the desired compounds vs current routes through the BIOSEA process.
  • Develop and formulate new ingredients using the active principles obtained via the BIOSEA process to create improved, high added-value products that comply with EU legislation, including food ingredients such as proteins with a high nutritional content, feed ingredients for obtaining fish feed with inmunostimulative properties and swine feed with a high protein content in proteins and functional compounds. It will also develop cosmetic and personal care bio-compounds for counteracting skin ageing.
  • Develop and validate a microencapsulation process that enhances the stability of bioactive compounds for incorporating them in industrial formulations and to provide a smart controlled-release system for of the active ingredient.

Ensure the economic, technical and environmental sustainability of the BIOSEA process and products.


The BIOSEA project expects to deliver the following impacts. It will:

  • Establish a new process for extracting separate compounds of interest, or purifying them, at sufficiently high yields and low costs that allow the processes to be scaled up cost effectively.
  • Establish innovative mechanisms for obtaining the greatest profitability from aquatic biomass, achieving improved yield per mass unit biomass in the cultivation process, with a predicted 55 percent improvement in cost-effectiveness over existing procedures.
  • Improve yield per mass unit biomass-input, or improve cost effectiveness when compared to current approaches to producing comparable products.
  • Establish innovative mechanisms for maximising the profitability of aquatic biomass, achieving improved yield per mass unit biomass during the cultivation process.

Project achievements & milestones

BIOSEA project achieves key results for the creation of the blue bioeconomy in Europe
15 February 2021
Innovative methods for cultivating algae and converting it into sustainable feedstock open the door to creating a bio-based blue economy in Europe. Read more

BIOSEA project creates greener ingredients from algae to boost the bioeconomy
13 January 2021
Algae grown, harvested and processed using new techniques developed by BBI JU-funded researchers could supply greener alternatives to common ingredients - putting more eco-friendly cosmetics on the shelf and adding more sustainable foods to the menu. Read more

Meet three European pioneers leading the blue bioeconomy revolution
BioMarketInsights, 29 November 2019
Comprehensive article about the contribution of BBI JU to the development of the blue bioeconomy in Europe. The BBI JU AQUABIOPRO-FITABACUS and BIOSEA projects are explained as examples in the field. Read the article