Microbial plant bioprocessing what can we learn from the cow?

The most significant sources of organic waste in South Africa is sugarcane bagasse (5.35 million metric tonnes), invasive plants (11.30 million metric tonnes) and fruit wastes (1.3 billion metric tonnes). Microbiologists from Stellenbosch University are investigation the use of mammalian rumen in the anaerobic digestive process to break down or separate organic waste into its original building blocks, from where it can subsequently be converted into various high-value products — just as a cow does with processing the tough plant material into the basic building blocks upon which the production of milk is based.

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