Optimal preparation of food waste to increase its utility for sophorolipid production by Starmerella bombicola

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Original languageEnglish
Article number128993
Journal / PublicationBioresource Technology
Online published1 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023


Secondary feedstocks, such as food waste (FW), have been used for yeasts (e.g. Starmerella bombicola) to produce sophorolipids (SLs), which are commercially available biosurfactants. However, the quality of FW varies by location and season and may contains chemicals that inhibit SLs production. Therefore, it is crucial to identify such inhibitors and, if possible, remove them, to ensure efficient utilization. In this study, large scale FW was first analysed to determine the concentration of potential inhibitors. Lactic acid, acetic acid and ethanol were identified and found to be inhibitors of the growth of S. bombicola and its SLs production. Various methods were then evaluated for their ability to remove these inhibitors. Finally, a simple and effective strategy for removing inhibitors from FW was developed that complied with the 12 principles of green chemistry and could be adopted by industry for high SLs production. © 2023 Elsevier Ltd

Research Area(s)

  • Food waste inhibitor, High free amino nitrogen, Inhibitor removal, Sustainability