The consortium has already tested INCOVER technologies individually at lab scale. The innovation of INCOVER project comes from the combination of all INCOVER technologies, for a bio-production and resource recovery-based wastewater treatment. The description of each technology is as follows:

Yeast based organic acid production

  •  In contrast to the various applications of the well-known baker’s yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae for brewing, winemaking and biofuel production, up to now the economic potential of other yeasts have only been partially harnessed.

    Some yeast species however, particularly of the non-conventional yeast genera Candida, Kluyveromyces, Pichia, Pseudozyma, Torulopsis or Yarrowia, are able to produce aroma compounds, enzymes, organic acids, polyols or single cell oil through an efficient microbiological process.

    The extraordinary capability of Yarrowia lipolytica for extracellular product formation of organic acids (e.g. citric, isocitric and α-ketoglutaric acid) provides new perspectives for using yeast based biotechnology processes to produce important industrial chemicals. The efficiency of these processes will be assessed and demonstrated in the INCOVER project. 

    Even wild-type strains of Y. lipolytica produce citric acid in high concentrations under conditions of nitrogen or phosphorus deficiency and carbon excess. Up to 140 - 190 g L-1 and selectivity greater than 90% were achieved from plant oils, glucose or raw glycerol, a biodiesel-production by-product.

    The ability of non-conventional yeasts to assimilate many different carbon sources (carbohydrates, hydrocarbons, polyols, fats, plant oils and proteins) as sole substrates or in mixtures, as well as their robustness and high osmotic tolerance, demonstrate their particular suitability for the production of valuable marketable bio-products from industrial wastewater in combination with C rich by-products or waste.