Innovative processing of vegetables and potatoes
The project will increase consumers’ access to safe, healthy and convenient food through novel energy efficient processing techniques and improve utilization of raw material, by-products and waste, for which valorization strategies will be developed.
|Time:||1. April 2018 – 31. December 2021|
|Financed by:||EU - ERA-net - Susfood2|
|In cooperation with:||RISE (Sweden), ILVO and Food Pilot (Belgium), Ankara University (Turkey), CRIFFC (Turkey), Hoff AS (Norway), Fjordland AS (Norway), Greenyard Prepared (Belgium).|
We aim at developing sustainable food production systems addressing novel, innovative technologies for processing of potatoes and vegetables (e.g. carrot, black salsify).
How we work
The novel processing technologies, including 3 types of Microwave Heating, High Moisture Extrusion Cooking (HMEC) and Pulsed Electric Field (PEF), have been utilized to demonstrate the potential to combine savings in energy and water consumption and improvement of sensorial and nutritional quality. HMEC and pre-treatment using PEF, and Supercritical Fluid Extraction (SFE) have been demonstrated to add value to underutilized by-products and waste.
Mathematical modelling and innovative process design are used to optimize the conditions for the innovative processing technologies, with the aim to improve energy and cost efficiency. We have also used modelling to predict how process design influences the kinetics of nutrient retention, functional properties of treated foods, and how they contribute towards desired properties and quality.
Additionally, innovative canning technology introducing modified can geometries have complemented process design to further optimize energy efficiency.
The global volume of vegetable food waste, not including agricultural waste, is estimated to 400 million tons/year. Valorization of unused biomass during processing thus enhances food production sustainability and contributes to a lower ecological impact. Waste will be reduced in the food supply chain by pre-treatment for stabilization and efficient extraction with minimal use of solvents, for recycling into the food chain. This is investigated using the novel technologies PEF and SFE in combination with mild technologies like Low-oxygen milling and Dry-On-Water technology.
- Progress despite Covid-19 pandemic measures: As a consequence of the various pandemic measures in the partner countries during the spring 2020, several experiments and research exchange have been delayed. However, InProVe scientists have been able to focus on writing, planning and publishing. The project is progressing despite the challenging circumstances, and several digital meetings have taken place.
- New technologies represent opportunities to create higher added value out of agrifood by-products in a sustainable way. High Temperature – Short Time (HTST) Tubular microwave (TMW) has been developed for processing of fish soup with root vegetables in pilot scale. Results show that mouth-feel, texture and aroma are improved in HTST processed soup as compared to conventional processing. Evaluation of nutritional value of the HTST soup is ongoing.
- Canning: In canning heat transfer rate is mainly influenced by container shape & product type. Since convective heat transfer coefficient is assumed infinite, this leaves container geometry the only option to increase heat transfer rate and decrease process time for further quality improvement. A recent innovation is the use of toroidal cans for a significant heating rate increase for both solid and liquid food products. The advantage of toroid cans for heat treatment of canned food products is clear, but effect is dependent on food matrix. Collected data will be used in future modelling and kinetic studies of relevant macro- and micronutrients.
- Use of PFE and SC-CO2 for extraction of phytochemicals: PEF & SC-CO2 are useful ‘green’ technologies to extract valuable phytochemicals. PEF was evaluated as pre-treatment before SC-CO2 extraction to recover carotenoids from carrot by-products. Follow-up experiments are planned with other by-products.
- Use of HMEC for texturizing plant-derived ingredients: HMEC is a interesting technology to turn plant-based ingredients into ‘meat-like’ vegan or hybrid products. Protein-rich by-products (e.g. side streams from pea and mushroom processing) have been evaluated as raw materials in a high-moisture extrusion cooking process.
600 Europeans participated in our informal survey about microwave habits. The results was presented in a popular article.
We have made a flyer about the main aims of the InProVe project.
- Valorization of Tomato Surplus and Waste Fractions: A Case Study Using Norway, Belgium, Poland, and Turkey as Examples. Foods Journal
- Toroidal cans for thermal processing of liquid and solid-liquid mixtures under static and end-over-end rotation. Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies
- EFFoST 11.-14.th of November 2019: 3 posters and 1 presentation
- Many Europeans lack knowledge of proper microwave use
- EU research collaboration: Success or failure?
- A hole in the can may provide better canned food
- Banning canning is a misunderstanding
- Less potato waste and better food with new technologies