Fossil-free production – bio-based fertilisers

Mistra Food Futures Report #8. Fossil-free production – bio-based fertilisers. Efficient use of nutrient-rich by-products to replace mineral fertilisers in agriculture.

Biofertilizers is generated as a co-product to biogas when digesting organic material in anaerobically in a biogas plant. In this report, a background to the biogas production and use of biofertiliser in Sweden today is given, as well as a detailed description of the life cycle assessment, including the soil experiments and calculations that formed the basis for the soil carbon modelling.

The results indicate that biofertilizers and biogas systems contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the Swedish food production system already today. The contribution to soil organic carbon stocks most likely makes well designed and controlled biogas systems close to carbon neutral. Systems with very low resource use and emission levels might even achieve a global cooling effect due to the potential soil carbon stock changes.

–  The biogas is an important product as it can be upgraded to a quality equivalent to natural gas and directly replace it in applications where natural gas is used and can also be used as a fuel in all types of vehicles with internal combustion engines adapted for gas propulsion, explains Niclas Ericsson, researcher at Mistra Food Futures.


Niclas Ericsson, Sigrun Dahlin (2022).

Download report

Mistra Food Futures Report #8. Fossilfri produktion – biobaserade gödningsmedel. Effektiv användning av näringsrika biprodukter för att ersätta mineralgödsel inom jordbruket.

About Mistra Food Futures

The overarching vision of the programme Mistra Food Futures is to create a science-based platform to enable transformation of the Swedish food system into one that is sustainable (in all three dimensions: environmental, economic, and social), resilient and delivers healthy diets. By taking a holistic perspective and addressing issues related to agriculture and food production, as well as processing, consumption and retail, Mistra Food Futures aims to play a key role in initiating an evidence-based sustainability (including environmental, economic, and social dimensions) and resilience transformation of the Swedish food system.