Food and packaging
The aim of this research area is to contribute to new knowledge that can be used in the development of food from grain or other plant-based raw materials along with packaging solutions. The area spans the entire chain from production of raw material to end consumer. The research supported should embrace sustainability, innovation and profitability. Ahead of this year’s call for proposals, we are particularly interested in the specific areas described below.
The health benefits of grain and legumes
We are looking for projects that result in new knowledge that can support the development of good, healthy and innovative food based on grain or legumes. The market for different protein rich vegetable based food is growing. Here, we see a need for research that focuses on both positive and negative health effects. For example, not only the consumption of grain products as part of a healthy diet, but also the connection between individual factors such as wholegrain, different grain fractions and the bioavailability of proteins from vegetable sources and the effects on metabolic syndrome, blood sugar and insulin regulation, bowl health and cognition. We expect that applications, where this is relevant, to take into consideration how such knowledge can be used to support future health claims.
Improved bread quality
In order to be able to extend the shelf life of bread, we are interested in research that focuses on the crispiness of the crust and the softness of the crumb. We need more knowledge about thing such as the distribution and retention of water in breadmaking, the role of A and B starch granules, the activity of endogenous enzymes and how these integrate with each other during the various process stages, from dough formation, proofing and baking until the bread is eaten (fresh and/or after the freezing chain).
We are also interested in baking bread with oats with minimal use of improvers. This requires knowledge about both oat flour and the properties of other ingredients and on the actual baking process itself. Sourdough bread with a taste profile that appeals to the global market is another area of interest. Here, we are looking for projects that focus on optimising raw materials, sourdough cultures and processes. Other areas of interest are “clean label” bread with improved storage quality and how different types of yeast affect the taste profile of bread.
The fractioning of grain and legumes for new ingredients
There is a big demand for different plant-based ingredients for innovative new products. To meet this need, current technology for fractioning and value added processing of grain and legumes needs to be further developed and improved. We are interested in projects than can generate knowledge to be able to optimise the yield and concentration of specific fractions and to assess production costs. We also need more knowledge on the functional properties of the fractions produced and how these can be affected by different processing methods. We have previously pursued projects within the area of the fractioning and extraction of wheat bran and oats. The methods used in these projects need to be scaled up, industrialised and made more efficient. Another area of interest is the refining of wheat germ.
If you have a project idea, we would be happy to discuss choice of materials and processes before you submit your application.
We are also interested in research that can increase knowledge (in the entire packaging chain), to be able to make optimal choices of sustainable and/or bio-based packaging solutions, for grain-based food in the first instance. Relevant concerns:
Optimisation of choice of materials for best performance and sustainability with the lowest environment impact.
Credible communication on the best choice of materials to consumers, customers and stakeholder organisations. Approach to factors such as functionality, origin of raw materials, plain or laminate, biodegradable or compostable, recyclability or energy recovery, formation of microplastics etc.