Camelina & crambe: Underutilized oil crops with new perspectives for Europe

M. Christou*, E. Alexopoulou, F. Zanetti, G. Di Girolamo, D. Righini, A. Monti, M. Stolarski, M. Krzyżaniak, E.N. van Loo, C. Eynck, J. Grushcow

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The on-going EU-funded project ‘COSMOS - Camelina & crambe Oil crops as Sources for Mediumchain Oils for Specialty oleochemicals’ aims to turn two underutilized crops, camelina and crambe, into profitable, sustainable, multipurpose, non-GMO European oil crops for the production of oleochemicals. These crops do not compete with food crops in terms of agricultural lands as they can grow on less fertile soils, under low inputs (water, nitrogen, pesticides etc.). Presently, the cultivation of these oil crops is not at a commercial scale in Europe, while the majority of published data on camelina derived from trials performed mainly in the USA. From preliminary research in previous and on-going projects (ICON, EUROBIOREF, ITAKA, COSMOS) these crops emerged as ideal candidates for larger-scale development in Europe. Several field trials comparing a high number of genotypes were established across Europe (Greece, Italy, Poland and The Netherlands) aiming at identifying the most promising ones in terms of seed and oil yields and their quality. From the first results crambe and camelina showed good adaptation in all field trials. Camelina showed better adaptability to differentiate environments demonstrating more stable yields than crambe across locations. In northern environments (i.e., Poland and north Italy) crambe yield was double than in Greece; for southern environments, characterized by mild winter, the anticipation of sowing to fall/winter could be a feasible option to increase crambe yields.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings 24th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition
PublisherETA-Florence Renewable Energies
ISBN (Print)9788889407165
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameEuropean Biomass Conference and Exhibition Proceedings
ISSN (Print)2282-5819


  • Oil crops
  • Oleochemicals


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