• News & Events News

AMBER supported application only Irish Winner of Horizon EIC 2022 Pathfinder

23 November 2022

AMBER is delighted to announce the successful Horizon European Innovation Council (EIC) 2022 Pathfinder grant application by Dr Sibu Chullanayil Padmanabhan. This is the only EIC Pathfinder Open won in Ireland this year.

The successful proposal, titled “Proof of principle fly larvae biorefinery for biopolymer plastic production” ( BioLaMer) seeks to manage and utilise food waste to develop biopolymers and added-value bioplastic products which in turn can contribute to the reduction via an alternative of petroleum plastics which along with food waste is a significant glocal challenge with regards to climate change.

BioLaMer aims to demonstrate a novel proof of principle fly larvae biorefinery by establishing food eating black soldier fly larvae (Hermetia illucens) as a high impact feedstock for cost-effective production of two biopolymers, polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) and chitosan. The advantages of the larvae route are that it:

  1. (i) is renewable and inexpensive;
  2. (ii) provides less complexity as the larvae has
    invariable chemical composition;
  3. (iii) can be used to mitigate the FW problem;
  4. (iv) can reduce raw material inputs, thus minimizing
    energy utilization;
  5. (v) doesn’t disturb the biodiversity; and
  6. (vi) can avoid/reduce pre-treatment costs associated with the waste-streams to produce the platform chemicals for biopolymer production.


Dr. Padmanabhan is an experienced materials scientist and healthcare materials expert whose. Also involved in the successful proposal was AMBER Director Professor Mick Morris.

Collaborate with AMBER

AMBER has a strong emphasis on collaboration. Central to AMBER’s research remit are collaborative projects performed with industry partners, and working with academic, industry and wider stakeholder on international and national research programmes.

Get in touch