Getting started with procurement of biobased products

Procurement of biobased products is a relatively new area. As yet, there are no general procedures for, or guides to, procurement of biobased products. This means being creative within the constraints of existing legal frameworks. In some cases, you will need to actively challenge the market to come up with new biobased solutions. 

Incorporate biobased award criteria in MEAT

Biobased can be used as a quality aspects in the Most Economically Advantageous Tender (MEAT) approach. During the procurement process, the use of biobased materials and products will be encouraged. This could involve incorporating requirements into the award criteria concerning the percentage of biobased products or biological raw materials contained in the biobased products in question. Another approach is to assess an action plan for the use of biobased products. You can also focus on the added value offered by biobased products: lower life-cycle costs, lower CO2 emissions, or superior biodegradability. You can then assign values to these benefits.

Challenge the market to come up with innovative biobased solutions

As yet, there are not many biobased products on the market, so – as a public procurer – it may well be that you are not being presented with the latest developments. Accordingly, you can opt for public procurement of innovation. This way, you get the market to actively contribute ideas while, at the same time, offering scope for innovative solutions.

You can also opt to give the market an opportunity to set up a demonstration project (also known as a pilot project). Projects of this type are an effective means of gaining experience in procurement and in the use of innovative biobased products. The tools offered by the "public procurement of innovation" programme can be used to select an innovative product without becoming entangled in public procurement rules. The same approach can be used for the procurement of biobased products.

Further details: Public procurement of innovation
Further details: From prescribing to inviting 

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