Life MUSCLES - MUssel Sustainable production (re)cyCLES - is a project funded by the EU programme Life which aims to reduce of the impact linked to the use of Polypropylene (PP) socks for mussel farming. Its main objective is to create and promote a more sustainable mussel production value chain that minimises the dispersion of PP socks in the marine environment and encourage the recovery and recycling of polymers to produce new socks and/or other items.


Life MUSCLES has several specific objectives:

  1. Starting the transition to a circular economic model within the mussel production sector in the targeted areas through the recovery and recycling of polypropylene (PP) socks used for mussels farming;
  2. Increasing the sustainability of the mussel farming sector in the targeted areas by promoting both the replacement of PP socks with ones made of biodegradable and compostable biopolymer (BP) and validating the feasibility of mechanical and organic recycling of biopolymeric (BP) socks.
  3. Providing the Italian mussel farmers with a mobile Recycling Plant (300 kg/day) able to operate directly at mussel farms facilities;
  4. Characterization of the recycled PP and BP material in order to ensure its applicability within the "mussel farming" supply chain and other production chains/sectors;
  5. Promote the development of new business among the companies in the mussels farming sector;
  6. Awareness raising of key different target groups and stakeholders such as farmers, distributors and consumers, on the sustainability of mussel production sector;
  7. Definition and transfer of good practices to reduce the dispersion/abandonment of PP socks at sea.


Life MUSCLES is a Life project being implemented by a consortium of 8 Italian partners led by the NGO Legambiente (see “our network” for more information).

Project’s website: