Making ice cream out of bananas, recovery of mash from beer production - Pilot projects on the circular economy have been selected

Government Communications Department
29.9.2017 13.44 | Published in English on 3.10.2017 at 17.26
Press release 438/2017

The pilot projects have been selected on the circular economy. The application for the first round of pilots at the Place to Experiment was used to particularly seek small-scale pilots to promote the circular economy in the ways we live, eat and move about. 21 pilots were selected for funding. The pilot projects will be primarily carried out during 2017.

During the summer, the Experimental Finland team of the Prime Minister’s Office looked for pilots concerning the circular economy that could be implemented with EUR 500 to 5 000. The application was open to all. In total, 126 proposals were received. The selected pilots are carried out by, for instance, private individuals, a number of companies and associations, two universities of applied sciences as well as the cities of Lappeenranta and Kerava.

Ideas related to food were particularly highlighted in the submitted proposals. Nearly half of the selected pilots aim to reduce food waste in various ways. For example, the Banelino pilot makes ice cream out of discarded bananas. The experiments by Idealgrain Oy seek ways to make use of mash, a by-product of brewing. Pilots will be used with an aim to introduce the operating model of Loop, a food waste restaurant in Helsinki, all over the country.

Experiments related to mobility will particularly include testing the utilisation of car-pools. Many experiments not directly connected to how we live, eat and move about, but which were otherwise considered to promote the goals of the circular economy, were also selected for piloting. For example, the Lahti University of Applied Sciences aims to use its pilot to make it easier to use repair services as well as to support the activities of small repair entrepreneurs. Tyylitoimisto Oy wishes to contribute to the sustainable consumption of clothing with its experiments.

The jury included experts from the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, the University of Helsinki and different ministries.

”The discussions held in the panel revealed that we already have top experts in the circular economy and piloting in Finland. The next step will be to increase understanding and competence everywhere in Finland so that we will be able to utilise piloting at different levels – small and quick pilots and more extensive and research-oriented ones – in the right places”, says Ira Alanko of the Prime Minister’s Office, the Project Manager of the Experimental Finland team.

The aims of the application included finding new solutions as well as encouraging people to act in new ways. The application succeeded in reaching both goals. ”The application has clearly brought new people to the field of the circular economy. Proposals were submitted to the application by a number of companies and organisations whose work has previously not been closely linked to the themes of the circular economy”, says Johanna Kotipelto, Senior Specialist at the Prime Minister’s Office.

In the spring of 2016, the Government decided to grant two million euros in seed capital for the establishment of the Place to Experiment and the funding of the first applications for pilot projects realised via the platform. EUR 100 000 was divided between the selected pilot projects on the circular economy. The majority of the selected pilot projects was granted the maximum sum, i.e. EUR 5 000, to support implementation. The smallest amount of money received by a pilot project was EUR 2 000. In addition to money, the experiments also receive support for piloting and communications. This allows introducing the best practices to the whole of Finland.

The application for pilot projects on the circular economy was an experiment in itself, seeking a new way of funding small-scale pilots as well as means to further develop the new Kokeilun paikka platform. The experiences gathered during this application period will also be used in launching the next applications.

A list of the selected pilot projects is here

Inquiries: Project Manager Ira Alanko, Prime Minister’s Office, tel. +358 295 160028, ira.alanko(at) , Senior Specialist Johanna Kotipelto, Prime Minister’s Office, tel. +358 295 160206, johanna.kotipelto(at)

key projects
administrative policy
circular economy
electronic transactions
material recovery
research activity
transfer of money