BioDisc: Development and evaluation of an enzyme based extraction and processing technology for plant protein from different sources dedicated for food application

Funding: BMBF (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung)
Project Duration: 01.06.2005 - 31.05.2007
Project Manager: Caroline Hennigs
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Traditional Biotechnology covers topics such as food biotechnology, beer and wine making, water purification since centuries. With the increased demand for functional food products with low allergenic risk, food biotechnology based on renewable resources is gaining more and more importance.

Worldwide, the needs for renewable sources of high value proteins are increasing, especially as nowadays human nutrition depends to 75% on plant proteins. Currently, soybean is the most commonly used protein of plant source in industrialised western countries. As much as 60% of processed foodstuff do contain soybean material.

As a high and increasing prevalence of allergies to soybean are being observed, a new European source of plant protein has to be identified. Taking into account on the one hand already strong dependence on plant protein imports from outside the EU and on the other hand the increasing market demand for high value plant proteins, the proposers are convinced that a better exploitation of plant proteins from renewable resources.

The project will exploit new, protein rich sources for plant protein, e.g. lupine, rapeseed and sesame, protein rich plants like lucerne or even harvesting residues as raw materials in order to evaluate the feasibility of an enzyme based extraction technology.