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Bede Mickan

Bede completed his Master of Science in 2011 and was fortunate enough to be awarded the Australian Post Graduate Award to continue studies for a PhD in soil microbial ecology. His PhD focus investigated simulated agricultural management practices on soil microbial processes in relation to rhizosphere Carbon and Nitrogen cycling under water stress.

Bede finished his PhD in 2016 and went straight into the position of research and development manager for Richgro garden products, and has brought scientific understanding to commercialisation at a national level. During this time Bede was in the inaugural SproutX accelerator group where he successfully founded the start-up Food3.

Since 2017, Bede readily took the opportunity to diversify his skills by collaborating with multiple researchers across Australia, investigating the broad themes of nutrient and value recovery from food waste - as evidenced in his more recent publications e.g. anaerobic digestion, microalgal cultivation, lactic acid fermentation. Bede has successfully been able to bridge the gap between academia and industry and takes great pride in being an industry based applied scientist.

Bede is a driven and fun loving individual, who enjoys outdoor life (kite surfing, skateboarding with kids) to the full with his partner Aimee, and their three children - Audrey, Jude and Maggie.

Research interests

Bede is a microbial generalist, who aims to relate microbial driven functional processes to; plant health, anaerobic digestion performance, lactic acid fermentation, or commercial composting. To achieve this, all of his skills have been centred around DNA sequencing of bacteria and fungi with subsequent analysis of functional genes relating to certain metabolic pathways.

Bede's research themes fall under;

  • Generating value from waste
  • Developing the biorefinery
  • Climate change (water stress, carbon sequestration)

Bede has been successful for two AusIndustry Innovation connections grants for Richgro Garden products, where there have been positive industrial and academic outcomes, in Microalgal cultivation, and anaerobic digestion effluent re-use (digestate).



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