The most important at least partially bio-based surfactants in washing powder and detergents, in dishwashing and car cleaning are alkyl polyglycosides (APGs) or non-ionic surfactants. APGs are a chemical compound of sugars and alcohols. The fatty alcohols used are based either on fossil raw materials or on short-chain fatty acids, which are usually obtained from palm kernel or coconut oil. APGs are relatively more expensive due to the high demand for these oils and their costly production – in the case of petroleum-based alcohols. What’s more, the use of the initial products is unsustainable. In the BioFacts project, Fraunhofer UMISCHT uses a newly developed process to produce the alcohols required for APGs from ethanol at a competitive price. Ethanol is available worldwide in large quantities and is currently already produced from sustainable raw materials such as straw and wood that do not compete with food.