Introduction

There is a global need, from sustainability, food security and also health perspective, to increase dietary intake of plant protein. Side-streams from wheat and rice processing offer large under-exploited raw material potential, and we will work throughout the agro-industrial value chain to valorise that. The main aim of PROMINENT is to develop techno-economically and environmentally viable protein-based ingredients and foods from cereal processing side streams. We will concentrate on novel fractionation and extraction technologies, such as bioprocessing, supercritical carbon dioxide (SC-CO2) -extraction, thermo-mechanical technologies, wet and dry fractionation, and expanded bed adsorption as well as their combinations as novel hybrid processing technologies. A strong focus will be in using enzymatic and thermo-mechanical methods to improve techno-functional and sensory properties of protein ingredients to reach desirable taste and texture in food applications. Pasta, biscuit, cake and beverage food models are the main end product categories, where new protein ingredients will be used as dietary protein source and act as performance proteins to deliver similar techno-functional and sensory properties to animal proteins. We will also assess the safety, quality, techno-economic feasibility, sustainability and market potential of the new protein ingredients and foods, and design strategies for marketing, dissemination, and exploitation of innovations. The project will support the economic growth, resource efficiency and sustainability of the European agro-food industry, and open new market opportunities by generating new plant protein ingredients obtained from cereal processing side streams as well as new products for the consumer food market.

Specific challenge

Valorisation of proteins from side streams of the agro-food sector, e.g. bioethanol or starch production from cereal grains, represents a promising alternative to animal protein products. Current processing and conversion concepts (e.g. mechanical milling, chemical extraction, proteolysis) have limitations in terms of the quality of resulting products (protein content, functionality, taste, etc.) thus restricting the application range in food processing. The challenge is to overcome these limitations in state-of-the-art technologies via the development of sustainable processes yielding market attractive products that meet consumers demands.

Scope: Development of industrially viable processing concepts for the valorisation of protein products from plant residues (e.g. from bioethanol or cereal starch processing industries) fulfilling market requirements (functionality, taste, purity, cost, safety) in the food segment using animal proteins as benchmark. Proposals should address techno-functional and sensorial properties of products, showing clear advancements beyond the state of the art in terms of added value and extended product portfolio and application range. A life-cycle assessment should be carried out in order to evaluate the environmental and socio-economic performance of the developed products. Safety aspects are also to be considered. The feasibility of integrating the proposed concept into existing industrial processing chains should be assessed.

Expected impact

· Increasing the value of the protein fraction by at least 100%.

· Achieving a conversion rate of at least 30 % of the protein fractions in processed streams to high-value products suitable for human consumption, with a protein content at least 40%.

· Achieving technological validation of at least 3 food products based on the recovered plant-based proteins, ready for demonstration.

· Opening of new markets for the European agro industry in food applications currently dominated by animal proteins.

Introduction

There is a global need, from sustainability, food security and also health perspective, to increase dietary intake of plant protein. Side-streams from wheat and rice processing offer large under-exploited raw material potential, and we will work throughout the agro-industrial value chain to valorise that. The main aim of PROMINENT is to develop techno-economically and environmentally viable protein-based ingredients and foods from cereal processing side streams. We will concentrate on novel fractionation and extraction technologies, such as bioprocessing, supercritical carbon dioxide (SC-CO2) -extraction, thermo-mechanical technologies, wet and dry fractionation, and expanded bed adsorption as well as their combinations as novel hybrid processing technologies. A strong focus will be in using enzymatic and thermo-mechanical methods to improve techno-functional and sensory properties of protein ingredients to reach desirable taste and texture in food applications. Pasta, biscuit, cake and beverage food models are the main end product categories, where new protein ingredients will be used as dietary protein source and act as performance proteins to deliver similar techno-functional and sensory properties to animal proteins. We will also assess the safety, quality, techno-economic feasibility, sustainability and market potential of the new protein ingredients and foods, and design strategies for marketing, dissemination, and exploitation of innovations. The project will support the economic growth, resource efficiency and sustainability of the European agro-food industry, and open new market opportunities by generating new plant protein ingredients obtained from cereal processing side streams as well as new products for the consumer food market.

Specific challenge

Valorisation of proteins from side streams of the agro-food sector, e.g. bioethanol or starch production from cereal grains, represents a promising alternative to animal protein products. Current processing and conversion concepts (e.g. mechanical milling, chemical extraction, proteolysis) have limitations in terms of the quality of resulting products (protein content, functionality, taste, etc.) thus restricting the application range in food processing. The challenge is to overcome these limitations in state-of-the-art technologies via the development of sustainable processes yielding market attractive products that meet consumers demands.

Scope

Development of industrially viable processing concepts for the valorisation of protein products from plant residues (e.g. from bioethanol or cereal starch processing industries) fulfilling market requirements (functionality, taste, purity, cost, safety) in the food segment using animal proteins as benchmark. Proposals should address techno-functional and sensorial properties of products, showing clear advancements beyond the state of the art in terms of added value and extended product portfolio and application range. A life-cycle assessment should be carried out in order to evaluate the environmental and socio-economic performance of the developed products. Safety aspects are also to be considered. The feasibility of integrating the proposed concept into existing industrial processing chains should be assessed.

Expected impact

· Increasing the value of the protein fraction by at least 100%.

· Achieving a conversion rate of at least 30 % of the protein fractions in processed streams to high-value products suitable for human consumption, with a protein content at least 40%.

· Achieving technological validation of at least 3 food products based on the recovered plant-based proteins, ready for demonstration.

· Opening of new markets for the European agro industry in food applications currently dominated by animal proteins.