Demand for proteins is increasing for food and feed applications. To meet the increasing demand, production will have to double by 2050. However, current protein production, both animal- and vegetal based, has severe negative environmental impacts in terms of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, land and water use, as well as biodiversity loss. The EU is not selfsufficient when it comes to protein production and a large proportion of the demand is met with imported proteins with concerns regarding food security and the general competitiveness of the EU. It is therefore of vital importance to find sustainable alternative protein sources that can be economically produced in quantities that meet growing food and feed sectors. NextGenProteins has identified microalgae, single cell protein and insects as three promising sources of alternative proteins that can be produced through innovative and environmentally sustainable bioconversion processes using industrial waste streams. These processes cause limited environmental impacts and pressure on natural resources. Through collaboration between industry and RTD, the project will address key barriers that currently prohibit or limit the application of the three alternative proteins in food and feed, such as production scalability and optimisation, production costs, value chain risks, safety, regulations and consumer trust and acceptance. The project will demonstrate the suitability and economic viability of the alternative proteins in food and feed value chains and explore their market opportunities with the industry, stakeholders, policy makers and consumers. NextGenProteins will find means to improve the acceptability and trust of consumers towards alternative proteins and processes. The project will contribute to strengthening food security, sustainability and self-sufficiency of EU protein production with future-proof supply, as well as long-term reduction of land use, water use, GHG emissions and energy of EU food sector.

Project details

Unibo Team Leader: Alessio Bonaldo

Unibo involved Department/s:
Dipartimento di Scienze Mediche Veterinarie
Dipartimento di Farmacia e Biotecnologie
Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Agro-Alimentari

Institute of Biomedical and Neural Engineering Reykjavik University (Iceland)

Other Participants:
VRM Srl Naturalleva (Italy)
Fazer Sweden Ab (Sweden)
Teknologian Tutkimuskeskus Vtt (Finland)
GESCO Società Cooperativa Agricola - GESCO S.C.A. (Italy)
Verein Zur Foerderung Des Technologietransfers An Der Hochschule Bremerhaven E.V. (Germany)
Aktiebolaget Herbert Karlssons Charkuterifabrik (Sweden)
Mutatec (France)
Biozoon Gmbh (Germany)
Rise Research Institutes Of Sweden Ab - Rise (Sweden)
Entocube Oy (Finland)
Aquascot Limited (United Kingdom)
Sp/F Syntesa (Faroe Islands)
Grimur Kokkur Ehf (Iceland)
Mowi Feed As (Norway)
Rise Processum Ab (Sweden)
Arbiom Sas (France)
ALMA MATER STUDIORUM - Università di Bologna (Italy)
Waitrose Limited (United Kingdom)
Circular Solutions Ehf (Iceland)
Algaennovation Ltd (Israel)

Total Eu Contribution: Euro (EUR) 7.985.149,77
Project Duration in months: 48
Start Date: 01/10/2019
End Date: 30/09/2023

Cordis webpage
Project website

Responsible consumption and production This project contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

UE flag This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 862704