LoogLab members presented the RESTA project on Estonian National Television.
Rait Kivi, a research fellow at the University of Tartu, emphasises the untapped potential of wood waste. He points out the surprising similarity between cellulose in wood and table sugar, both comprising the same molecule but structured differently. This cellulose, or “wood sugar”, can be a resource for cell factories, enabling the production of valuable chemicals. The more these factories can harness wood waste, the less reliant we become on oil. Already, yeast-based cell factories produce substances like beta-carotene.
Ilona Faustova, Associate Professor of Microbiology at the University of Tartu, underscores the global and national challenge posed by excessive wood waste. In Estonia, this waste, often generated from sawmills, traditionally finds use in stoves, a method she regards as environmentally detrimental. Faustova emphasizes the need for innovative solutions to repurpose this wood waste, making it more useful and environmentally friendly.
Watch the TV show here.