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Lab measures package handling during increased shipping amidst Covid-19

Photo of Dr. Laszlo Horvath in the laboratory.

Photo of Dr. Laszlo Horvath in the laboratory.

What is the field of Sustainable Biomaterials (SBIO) all about?

The field of sustainable biomaterials is about the use of natural, renewable resources to produce innovative materials and bioenergy in a sustainable manner. It is a blend of science, engineering, and business enterprises.

Sustainable Biomaterials Degree

A field with great career opportunities where you can make a difference. There is a growing need to make products more “green” and renewable resources such as wood and other biomaterials provide a natural way to design and build innovative and sustainable products for our future.  


Within this Degree you can choose the following tracks:

Packaging Systems and Design Degree

If you are looking for a creative, interesting, and always changing field, then you are needed in Packaging Systems and Design. Packaging design includes many different aspects of the use of sustainable materials and biomaterials in packaging for transportation, storage, and delivery of products.


Alison Bird
Alison Bird

"Get as much experience as you can in your field through internships.  Also, take advantage of projects and collaborations with colleagues and industry members outside of the classroom.  These team experiences helped me understand the industry and to work with my colleagues to solve issues. I've been able to go on the amazing study abroad trips that were led by SBIO faculty to Costa Rica and Ireland, but was also able to take a whole semester to live and study abroad in New Zealand independently.  All of these trips have been amazing growth experiences and have enhanced my global perspective of the importance of sustainable biomaterials." - Alison Bird, SBIO Graduate

Graduate Student Showcase

Mary Alvarez Valverde
Mary Alvarez Valverde

This past year working at the Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design has been a unique professional experience. My own background comes from wood science so being introduced to the world of packaging and pallets has truly changed the way that I view simple things such as an Amazon Prime Package that magically shows up at my door a few days after ordering. I've been lucky enough to learn about different tools that are used by packaging engineers that not only have economic impact but also impact the environment and worker safety.

The projects that we work on in the lab are products that affect our very own daily lives and the lives of many others who are involved in the supply chain. Packaging and the supply chain were  interesting concepts to me before I began my masters, but now I understand that they're far more complex and parts of a truly amazing world that has an infinite number  of moving parts and people. Working in a lab that focused on these topics and concepts has been personally enriching and professionally impactful. - Mary Alvarez Valverde, M.S. Graduate Student

One of Us

Learn more about SBIO

Laszlo Horvath, Asst Professor of Practice, and students, Sustainable Biomaterials, Brooks Forest Products Center. Pallets and packaging.

Dorina Bugledits

Planning a visit

SBIO Main office

310 West Campus Drive
230 Cheatham Hall (0323)
Blacksburg, VA  24061
Phone: (540) 231-8853
Fax: (540) 231-8176

Brooks Forest Products Center

1650 Research Center Drive (0503)
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Phone: (540) 231-7107
Fax: (540) 231-8868