Food and Non-Food Biomass Production, Processing and Use in sub-Saharan Africa: Towards a Regional Bioeconomy
The bioeconomy concept has the aim of adding sustainability to the production, transformation and trade of biological goods. Though taken up throughout the world, the development of national bioeconomies is uneven, especially in the global South, where major challenges exist in Sub-Saharan Africa with respect to implementation. The BiomassWeb project aims to underpin the bioeconomy concept by applying the 'value web' approach, which seeks to uncover complex interlinked value webs instead of
... webs instead of linear value chains. The project also aimed to develop intervention options to strengthen and optimize the synergies and trade-offs among different value chains. The special issue "Advances in Food and Non-Food Biomass Production, Processing and Use in Sub-Saharan Africa: Towards a Basis for a Regional Bioeconomy" compiles 22 articles produced in this framework. The articles are grouped in four sections: the value web approach; the production side; processing, transformation and trade; and global views. The synthesis presented in this paper introduces the challenges of the African bioeconomy and the value web approach, and outlines the contributing articles.