Optimising bio-based fertilisers in agriculture


Providing a knowledge basis for new policies

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 818309 (LEX4BIO). This output reflects only the author’s view and the European Union cannot be held responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

Optimising usage of bio-based fertilisers (BBFs)

Imported mineral phosphate and fossil energy-intensive nitrogen fertilisers cause major detrimental impacts on the environment, whilst nutrient-rich side-streams/organic waste remain under-used.

By optimising usage of bio-based fertilisers (BBF) from side-streams, ensuring their safety, building evidence-based trust in their usage and developing legislative framework for their use, it will be possible to reduce dependence upon mineral/fossil fertilisers, benefiting the environment and the EU’s economy.

LEX4BIO aims to achieve this goal by collecting and processing regional nutrient stock, flow, surplus and deficiency data, and reviewing and assessing the required technological solutions. Socioeconomic benefits and limitations to increase substitution of mineral fertiliser for BBFs will be analysed.

A key result of LEX4BIO will be a universal, science-based toolkit for optimising the use of BBFs in agriculture and to assess their environmental impact in terms of non-renewable energy use, greenhouse gas emissions and LCA impact. 


Horizon 2020 (H2020)

TYPE OF action

Research & Innovation Action (RIA)


June 2019 – May 2023


21 partners in 14 European countries


CE-RUR-08-2018: Closing nutrient cycles

eu contribution

5 999 969 EUR

Lex4bio Overview 

Lex4bio goals in the EU agronomic context

Decrease European dependency on finite apatite-based phosphorus and energy-intensive mineral nitrogen  fertiliser

Our approach

A interdisciplinary and complementary approach, from BBBs identification to assessment, LCA and results’ diffusion 

Beyond Lex4bio

Ensure cross-cooperation & cross-dissemination with a network of EU major players, clusters & projects                         

Resulting in a new framework for BBFs acceptance

Provide  a policy framework for EU’s transition to BBFs, while minimising risks to the environment, ensuring food safety and supply, and protecting human health

Our Team

21 partners from 14 countries, covering Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western Europe, securing evaluation of BBFs in all relevant climate conditions

News & Event

Learn about all the current and past activities of LEX4BIO, events, publications, National Dissemination Fora, and workshops

Process factors affecting the contamination of struvite by selected antibiotics

LEX4BIO poster presentation at German Soil Science Society Annual Conference, Trier, 5 – 8 September Dr. Elke Bloem of the Julius Kühn-Institut (JKI), the German Federal Research Centre for Cultivated Plants attended the German Soil Science Society's Annual...

LEX4BIO National Dissemination Forum (NDF) in Finland

LEX4BIO National Dissemination Forum (NDF) in Finland   Place: Tietotalo, Jokioinen, Finland Time: 17th of August 2022   Dissemination of activities and results of LEX4BIO project to the relevant stakeholders at the national level are conducted through...

Plant nutrient and harmful heavy metal concentrations in agricultural soils of EU27 and UK

The "Plant nutrient and harmful heavy metal concentrations in agricultural soils of EU27 and UK" poster presented first important results of LEX4BIO project at the 22nd World Congress of Soil Science in Glasgow, 2022. The event is an important forum gathering experts...

LEX4BIO presented at Biorefine Conference in Ghent, Belgium

We are pleased to share that our Coordinator presented #LEX4BIO at the first edition of 'The role of biorefineries in European agriculture' Conference organized by Biorefine Cluster Europe on 30 and 31 May in Ghent, Belgium. The event aims to highlight the current...

LEX4BIO at the WETSUS Phosphorus Symposium in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands

The WETSUS Phosphorus Symposium took place in May 2022 in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands, as part of the first training week for the young researchers of the RecaP MSCA Innovative Training Network. During the symposium, experts from many EU countries gave presentations...

Dissemination Events

In 2020, LEX4BIO has been presented during several international events, ensuring to gain in visibility and attract stakeholders in supporting the achievement of our objectives.- First International Conference Strategies toward Green Deal Implementation - Water and...

Organisation of the First Polish NDF in Cracow

Our partner PAS organised on the 14th of December 2019, its first National Dissemination Forum, crucial activity within the project to reach local stakeholders, policy makers and maximise our results. This NDF meeting entitled "Cooperation for the circular economy...

Networking as a key to maximise LEX4BIO impacts

Since the beginning of the LEX4BIO project, networking activities have been undertaken to ensure cross-cooperation with relevant projects and clusters at EU scale. Several joint-activities and joint-promotion have already started. We are introducing here our current...

Where to meet us in 2020?

4th European Sustainable Phosphorus Conference (Vienna – June 2020): The European Sustainable Phosphorus Conference is a unique event bringing together companies, stakeholders, regional and national authorities, innovation and researchers, to discuss phosphorus and...

First results of the LEX4BIO project: discover our WP2 activities

WP2 focuses on the general effects of BBFs on soil quality and plant growth. Currently, the WP2 participants are focusing on the development of the specific task 2.1 as its outcome is crucial for the entire course of the LEX4BIO project. T2.1 is aiming at evaluating...

Lex4bio in practice

The optimisation of BBFs’ efficiency and safety, legislation, trust building and widespread implementation of their usage resulting from LEX4BIO are expected to positively impact on the environment and economy by reducing dependence upon mineral/fossil fertilisers.

Download our results and outcomes

Public outcomes and results provided by the LEX4BIO partners through the project implementation

Media corner

Communication kit, Leaflet and brochure,  Newsletter,  Webinars and workshop documentation, Scientific publications & Press release

“LEX4BIO supports the transition towards a circular economy by enhancing the use of nutrient-rich side-streams as BBFs. By optimising the use of fertilisers according to crop requirement, environmental impacts can be minimised and agriculture profitability improved”

— Kari Ylivainio, senior scientist from Luke & Project Coordinator

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