Nowadays, the use of agro-industrial by-products as alternative sustainable resources to generate bioenergy and high-value bioproducts is one of the most important research topics to tackle environmental concerns related to the excessive consumption of fossil-based fuels and rapid urbanization and industrialization. This chapter provides a broad overview of the potential of the main tequila industry by-products, agave bagasse and tequila vinasse, for biohydrogen (bioH2) and biomethane (bioCH4) production via dark fermentation and anaerobic digestion, respectively. First, pretreatment or conditioning steps commonly applied to tequila by-product streams before downstream biological processes are highlighted. The operational performance of bioH2- and bioCH4-producing reactors is subsequently reviewed, with a focus on reactor configuration and performance, microbial metabolic pathways, and the characterization of microbial communities. Additionally, the development of multi-stage anaerobic digestion processes is comprehensively discussed from a practical point of view. Finally, limitations and potential improvements in the field of bioH2 and bioCH4 production are presented.
Part of the book: New Advances on Fermentation Processes