Successful COSUN BEET Hackathon Marks Innovation in Sustainable Agriculture

On 16 and 17 April, the COSUN BEET Hackathon took place in Anklam, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. Eight teams took part and developed their ideas. COSUN BEET named three winning teams of the COSUN BEET Hackathon. They will now work with the COSUN BEET Co. to prepare the next steps in realising their project ideas. The solutions include useful microorganisms for resilient agriculture, the production of new protein-rich and high-quality products using fungi and algae, and the use of sugar beet leaves to produce high-quality chemicals.

Of the 26 proposals submitted, COSUN BEET decided to continue working with ten of them. These were developed over a period of around four weeks. The teams were accompanied by twelve mentors from the region as well as from Denmark, Finland and Sweden. They provided the teams with valuable tips and comprehensive expertise throughout the hackathon.

On 16 and 17 April, eight teams presented their solutions and a jury from COSUN BEET selected three winning teams in close consultation with the mentors:

Team n-fix from Belgium has developed an innovative method to produce microbial biofertilizers from beet pulp digestate, promising to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in sugar beet cultivation while enhancing plant robustness, yield, and sugar content, along with minimizing nitrogen input.

With its solution, the Team Vinasse2Proteins from Biberach University of Applied Sciences is focussing on the increasingly important role of plant proteins in the sustainable food supply of the future. These can be obtained, for example, from mushrooms that grow on residues from the bioethanol plant. The residual water is still of such good quality that it can be used to cultivate algae, which in turn can be processed into food.

Team CAPitalize Leaves, a consortium of the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research UFZ and the German Biomass Research Centre DBFZ, Leipzig, aims to further develop the innovative, climate friendly Capraferm process, which enables the conversion of beet leaves into carboxylic acids that can be used as starting materials for high-quality chemicals.

„A biorefinery of the future is a very complex refinery. With the selected ideas, we will break new ground and secure the future of the site and beet processing in Anklam. Sugar beet and the residual materials from processing can be used in many different ways – which we were able to see impressively,“ says Matthias Sauer, Managing Director of Cosun Beet Company.

The three winning teams now have a lot of work ahead of them and will work with the Cosun Beet Company to prepare the next steps in realising their project ideas.

The competition offered participants (companies, start-ups, universities, and non-university research institutions) not only a platform to present their innovations, but also an opportunity to network, exchange ideas and discuss the potential of the bioeconomy for the region.

Is your company the next challenge provider?

The next BioBoosters Hackathon in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern will take place in spring 2025. If you are interested in becoming a challenge provider, please do not hesitate to contact us. We would be delighted to organise the competition together with them.

COSUN BEET HACKATHON contact information

Questions regarding registration and practical information:
Dr. Gudrun Mernitz
+49 151 15273020

BioBoosters project information

BioBoosters is a concept developed by companies and organizations from seven European countries. It’s made to strengthen business that benefits the environment. By helping a company make an open call for solutions to their challenges or needs, the aim is to connect them with others with potential solutions. It’s a win-win situation where newer companies, start-ups, innovators, and researchers get the opportunity to collaborate or make business deals with more established companies.

BioBoosters is an initiative conducted through a project with the same name. It includes actors from Sweden, Finland, Germany, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania and is financed by the EU through the Baltic Sea Program.

In addition to the COSUN BEET HACKATHON there are four other BioBooster challenges this spring: click here!

Contact Information

Questions about the challenge:
Jenny Stukenbrock
Cosun Beet Company GmbH & Co. KG
+49 151 40457346

Questions regarding registration and practical information:
Dr. Gudrun Mernitz
+49 151 15273020


Lead Partner: JAMK University of Applied Sciences

Project information

2023-01-01 until 2025-12-31

Total: € 2 788 365
WITENO: € 396 484



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