TECH OFFER

Valorising Food Waste into Multifunctional Fibres

KEY INFORMATION

TECHNOLOGY CATEGORY:
Foods - Ingredients
TECHNOLOGY READINESS LEVEL (TRL):
LOCATION:
Ireland
ID NUMBER:
TO142192

TECHNOLOGY OVERVIEW

This technology encompasses a novel process to creating functional fibres from waste fruit, vegetable or seaweed biomasses. With the rise of consumers wanting clean-label or natural products, the demand for new and more natural ingredients within the food sector has increased. To meet this challenge, there has been a surge of new “functional” fibre products that bring technical or textural functionality to food systems. Highly functional fibres show superior texturising, stabilising and fat mimicking functionality that until recently, had only been provided by traditional food ingredients (i.e. agar, carrageenan, pectin, alginate, methylcellulose etc).

This technology is aimed at food ingredient/bioprocessing companies with access to food waste/seaweed biomasses, who would like valorise these streams. Applicable biomasses include carrot waste, seed oil cakes, protein extraction waste, citrus peel, juicing waste or various other sources. The streams can be evaluated for active ingredients and can be converted into various types of functional fibres. Once fibre functionality is optimised any new fibre products can be evaluated within pre-trailed applications for marketing purposes for the producer.

TECHNOLOGY FEATURES & SPECIFICATIONS

While the demand exists for functional fibres, the technology required to create these products involves an in depth understanding of hydrocolloids and food chemistry principles. The technology provided will evaluate the given biomass for known functional components needed for fibre functionality. The biomass will then be optimised for functionality by employing different processing parameters. Finally, applications and suggested selling price parameters can be established for the client. Customisation can occur in the form of:

  • Starting biomass constraints and processing
  • Type of final fibre functionality and performance
  • Final desired application for the fibre in the market

POTENTIAL APPLICATIONS

The technology is designed for consumers with access to large amounts of a given biomass. Ideally the biomasses is a waste stream and/or bi-product of a primary extraction. These functional fibres can be use in different applications such as:

  • Food systems
    • Bakery
    • Sauces
    • Traditional and plant-based dairy
    • Meat and meat analogues
    • Confectionary
  • Personal care
  • Horticulture

Market Trends & Opportunities

The total food fibre or dietary fibre markets are predicted to be in the region of US $5 to 7 billion with CAGR ranging from 6% to 13% over the next period (2025-2029). From a market perspective, the opportunity to develop new fibre ingredients from plant-based waste aligns with several trends:

  • Naturally functional ingredients
  • Clean label trends
  • Digestive wellness
  • Plant-based values/sustainability

Benefits

 The functional fibre technology has the following advantages:

  • Provides new income stream for the client from a previously non-utilised stream
  • Diversifies customers portfolio into a growing market
  • Aligns with end consumers values for natural and clean labels products
  • Sustainable processing and decreased food waste 
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