Project aims for waste-free processing of fish and oil plants

Wednesday, 22 August, 2012

The rising cost of doing business has strengthened the push for waste-free processing, with researchers exploring novel ways to use waste streams as resources. The VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland is coordinating the European Commission’s APROPOS (added value from high protein and high oil containing industrial co-streams) project that seeks to re-use protein- and oil-rich side streams from fish and oil plant processing.

While food industry co-streams can be excellent sources of proteins and oils for food and cosmetics, they are mostly used for fish and animal feed and energy, but often end up as waste.

The APROPOS project seeks to use several co-stream components from food-quality co-streams of rapeseed, canola, mustard and fish. It also aims to promote the small-to-medium enterprise (SME) sector’s competitiveness and develop regional production units near areas of primary production.

“From the point of view of sustainable development, using high-quality side streams from fisheries, agriculture and the food industry is a better solution than expanding agriculture and the number of farmed animals. There is global demand for a waste-free biorefinery, processing natural products which improve human wellbeing,” said Raija Lantto, Technology Manager at VTT.

The researchers hope to develop methods to ecologically, effectively and economically re-use protein- and oil-rich side streams suitable for food, dietary supplements and skin care products, as well as other applications.

Other partners in the APROPOS project include: the Polytechnic University of Catalonia; the Aleksandras Stulginskis University, Lithuania; the Manitoba Agri-Health Research Network from Canada; the Energy Research Institute, India; and the University of Nairobi, Kenya.

The three-year project has a budget of €4 million.

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