Current status and opportunities for fruit processing waste biorefineries

T.T. Manhongo, A.F.A. Chimphango*, P. Thornley, M. Röder

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The composition of fruit processing waste presents opportunities for its utilization as biorefinery feedstock in the production of renewable energy, biofuels, and high-value compounds. However, commercialization of fruit waste biorefineries is limited, attributable to the unavailability of information on feedstock availability, process design, and scale-up. Consequently, capital and operating cost requirements, associated resource use, barriers to mobilizing available feedstocks as well as the anticipated social and environmental impacts of such systems are poorly understood. This review presents an outline of the current fruit processing trends and utilization of fruit processing waste while proposing potential integrated multi-feed biorefinery schemes that can utilize the waste for co-production of bioenergy and biofuels with low volume high-value compounds (essential oils, pectin, and polyphenols). Multi-feedstock operation is envisaged to enable all-year-round operation of the biorefineries while co-production of bioenergy and bioactives is anticipated to boost the economic and environmental viability. Limitations in technology and process development, coupled with limited availability of information on economic viability and sustainability at industrial scale, are some of the challenges against the adoption of integrated biorefineries. Hence, future work aimed at evaluating the applicability in terms of economic viability and sustainability of integrated multi-feed fruit waste-based biorefineries is recommended.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111823
JournalRenewable and sustainable energy reviews
Early online date22 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022


  • Bioactive compounds
  • Bioenergy
  • Challenges
  • Fruit processing waste
  • Integrated multi-feed biorefineries
  • Opportunities


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