BIOTECMAR – Exploiting marine by-products across the Atlantic Region

A research project in the marine sector has united small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and research centres across the Atlantic Region. The three-year initiative has encouraged marine biomass production with the result that new functional molecules and ingredients are now available on the market.

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Biotecmar partners during the Kick-off and First Steering Committee meetings in March 2009 at IUEM, Plouzané. Biotecmar partners during the Kick-off and First Steering Committee meetings in March 2009 at IUEM, Plouzané.

The BIOTECMAR project established a network of scientists and producers, processors and users of marine resources in the UK, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and France. This network then set up a fully integrated chain with the aim of producing value-added compounds derived from the Atlantic Marine resources, thereby contributing to the sustainable management of natural sea resources.

The project was pivotal in helping the companies of the Atlantic Area, which are mainly SMEs, to take advantage of modern biotechnological tools to enhance their competitiveness. It also contributed to a diversification of the activities derived from marine biomass exploitation.

Rich resources

Marine resources such as seaweed, fish and shellfish products contain valuable ingredients and bioactive molecules. In addition, marine resources from fisheries, aquaculture and seaweed harvesting sectors generate important direct and indirect economic activities. These sectors produce a large amount of waste and by-products, which should be considered as raw materials for the production of valuable ingredients for food, animal and human nutrition, cosmetics and health.

Knowledge transfer

Through seminars, training sessions, practical workshops, conferences and other meetings, SMEs gained knowledge about the potential of marine resources, transformation processes, pertinent biological activities and market trends.

In all, the project created 10 new jobs.

"The European regional development Fund (ERDF) has enabled small or medium-sized companies of the Atlantic seaboard, who may not otherwise have done so, to collaborate with research laboratories."

Fabienne Guerard, Coordinator of the BIOTECMAR project, University of Western Brittany


Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “BIOTECMAR - economic development of SMEs in the marine sector” is EUR 2 322 692, with the EU’s European Regional Development Fund contributing EUR 1 509 750 through the “Brittany” Operational Programme for the 2007-2013 programming period.


Draft date

13/06/2014