Brazilian biorefineries from second generation biomass: critical insights from industry and future perspectives

Anuj K. Chandel*, Marcus B.S. Forte, Igor S. Gonçalves, Thais S. Milessi, Priscila V. Arruda, Walter Carvalho, Solange I. Mussatto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReviewpeer-review


Transitioning from gasoline and petroleum-based products to biofuels and green chemicals is a paradigm shift that will lead to the development of the bioeconomy. In this sense, the role of biorefineries in countries like Brazil is very important as the country generates a huge amount of second generation (2G) biomass every year and also has an attractive consumable market. However, technological innovations are still required to unleash the fullest potential of biomass conversion to biofuels and biochemicals, although successful examples are already a reality. For example, Amyris Inc. has developed renewable products for cosmetics (squalene), healthcare (artemisinin), and flavors / fragrances, and Suzano Papel e Celulose has developed sustainable technologies for the production of pulp and paper, and lignin-derived adhesives (Ecolig). First-generation ethanol in Brazil is an established source of transportation fuel but 2G ethanol production with low production costs is still a challenge at commercial scale, and companies like Raízen and GranBio continue making efforts to improve the economic feasibility of the adopted processes. In this context, the RenovaBio Policy launched by the Federal Brazilian Government in December 2017 aims to boost the production and utilization of biofuels and green chemicals in the country. Considering the matters mentioned above, this paper discusses the Brazilian biorefinery developments, technological advances, and current industrial scenario for the production of biofuels and chemicals.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBiofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)1190-1208
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Biomass
  • Biorefinery
  • Bioeconomy
  • Biofuels
  • Biochemicals


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