Singapore has a high consumption of fruits and vegetables, both locally produced and imported, and a significant portion of the total waste generated is derived from fruits and vegetables. These fruits and vegetables contain untapped nutritional and functional properties that can be upcycled into higher value products. This institute of higher learning has developed a technology with the know-how to cultivate microorganisms and a series of zero-waste extraction and purification methods to maximize the value of fruit peels into functional food ingredients.
This technology is designed for three types of industry players: i) fruit vending/processing industry with abundance of good quality fruit by-products; ii) waste management industry with technologies to value add to the by-products; and iii) start-ups with keen interest to upcycle by-products into novel food ingredients.
The technology is a sustainable process and here are some key features:
A reactor for pilot scale testing at a reasonable cost has been fabricated for collaborators to tap on.
Good quality fruit by-products from fruit industry are valuable resources for upcycling. These materials are currently disposed by incineration. With the high moisture content of fruit peels, incineration is energy-intensive leading to higher CO2 emission. This technology produces valuable food ingredients such as protein and dietary fiber, contributing to both food security and circular economy.