Inauguration of the first algae bio-refinery in the world

The first algae bio-refinery in the world was inaugurated on the occasion of the Breizh Algae Tour: « a premiere in the world! » evoked Hervé Balusson, Olmix CEO, first industrial partner in Ulvans project, algae valorization project in Brittany.

Breizh Algae Tour

On the occasion of the Breizh Algae Tour, from 8th to 11th September 2013, Olmix invited its partners to discover on field how Breton Algae sector could bring solutions to global nutrition and health issues from several perspectives:

  • SCIENCE: The tour of the historical heart of algae scientific knowledge.
  • RESOURCE: The onsite view of different modes of Algae harvesting.
  • INDUSTRY: The visit of the first Algae Bio-refinery in the world.



Discover Olmix prospective video « Algae Sector »


ULVANS: a memorable event in PLOUENAN!

Inauguration of the first algae bio-refinery in the world on Monday the 9th of September!

On Monday the 9th of September, in Plouénan (29) was inaugurated the first algae bio-refinery in the world, built on a former industrial site of Agrival, a subsidiary of the SICA of St Pol de Léon: “a premiere in the world” evoked Hervé Balusson, PDG of Olmix Group, the first industrial partner in Ulvans project whose aim is to create a channel for the processing and the exploitation of algae in Brittany.

Inauguration of the first green algae bio refinery in the world


From left to right:
1. Pierre Karleskind - vice-president of Brittany region in charge of sea and coastline
2. Jean-Pierre Le Roch - Deputy
3. Hervé Balusson - Olmix Group CEO
4. Aline Chevaucher - Mayor of Plouénan
5. Gwenegan Bui - Deputy
6. Jean-Francois Jacob - General Secretary of Sica



Conference at the Breizh Algae TourThe inaugural was held before a panel of 350 people gathered from 26 countries in the world, guests of Breizh Algae Tour event, the annual meeting on animal nutrition issues organised by Olmix.

Ulvans project partners Hervé Balluson, Olmix Group CEO, Jean-Francois Jacob – General Secretary of Sica, Mirko Fatovich - CEO of PRP and Eric Perchais, in charge of innovation affairs from BPI ) as well as a large number of political leaders (the deputies Jean-Pierre Le Roch and Gwenegan Bui), the vice-president of Brittany region in charge of sea and coastline Pierre Karleskind, Aline Chevaucher, mayor of Plouénan) cut the inaugural ribbon at 14H30 under a salvo of applauses in front of the new machine for washing and crushing used during the processing of harvested algae on the southern coast of Brittany.

A symposium spotlighted on Ulvans involving all the relevant players of algae exploitation channel

At the end of the day, it was organised a symposium on Ulvans project, launched a year ago on Kerisnel site, that dominates the bay of Roscoff (Finistère).

Round Table ULVANS - Hervé Balusson, Olmix CEO - new algae industry

From left to right:
1. Hervé Balusson - Olmix Group CEO
2. Jean-Francois Jacob - General Secretary of Sica
3. Christian Briand - Responsible for the project from BPI (Public Investement Bank)


Hervé Balusson and Jean-François Jacob provided a simple overview of the facts: this new coming-up algae exploitation channel is creating jobs! They invited all the economic and institutional actors as well as the civil society to join the development of this channel.

The Public Investment Bank (BPI) among the first institutions which sustained the Ulvans Project represented by Christian Briand, project responsible, allocated an aid of 10.7 million of euros, for a total investment amount of 25 millions of Euros provided by the partners.

By his side, Mirko Fatovich, president of PRP Technologies explained that his company which is manufacturing products to improve the vital soils functions has developed new products based on algae thanks to a strong cooperation throughout Ulvans project.

Then, followed the testimonies of Bernard Kloareg, (Director of Roscoff Biological Station) and of the mangers of SMEs such as Christine Le Tennier – manager of Globe Export et Algues de Bretagne, and Remy Lucas - PDG of Algopack) who have been relying on the algal resource too for several years, Brittany possessing an unique deposit in the world. Olivier Maupu, representing Néopolia, further to the building of a first ship suited to collect the algae (project Algapolia) confirmed in connection with his shipbuilding channel in Pays de la Loire the continuity of this cooperation and the developing of new shipbuilding projects.

Round table - Breizh Algae TourPhoto: Olivier Maupu - In charge of Development Néopolia and Bernard Kloareg - Director of Roscoff Biological Station

At the end of the symposium Cédric Troadec – Director of Professional Partnerships at Agro Campus Ouest, Patrick le Floch –Director of Sciences at Po Rennes and Jean Ollivro- president of Bretagne Prospective evoked the overall importance of this channel for the civil society in terms of jobs, economical and image development of Brittany. They also emphasized the issue of the social acceptability which will be solved only by modelling the collective and individual consciousness through information and education.

Finally, Hervé Balusson concluded the symposium by announcing a project of creation of a blue fund: a public/private investment fund to assure a strategic and financial support to the new algae channel, an investment fund of proximity in order to anchor the dynamic of the territory.


Breizh Algae Tour report:



See the images of the event

Breizh Algae Tour - OcéanopolisSeptember 8, 2013 - Brest: Océanopolis - Who's who


Breizh Algae Tour - First green algae bio refinerySeptember 9, 2013:


Breizh Algae TourSeptember 10, 2013: Visits - LDA Ploufragan, Sanders…


Breizh Algae Tour - Closing NightSeptember 11, 2013: Bréhan - Closing night


Breizh Algae Tour - Space 2013 Rennes, FranceSeptember 12, 2013: Rennes - SPACE



Breizh Algae Tour booklet
Download the Breizh Algae Tour booklet

Download the photo app to access the Augmented Reality video:
Breizh Algae Tour for Android.Breizh Algae Tour for iOS.

Download the booklet of the seminar in Plouénan

Download the booklet of the seminar in Roscoff

Olmix invites you to dive into the sea of Brittany: