Companies are starting to take another look at waste as by-products from food production pose a major problem to industry. Disposal can be costly and if a firm must pay for the whole fruit, they may as well find a way to use it all.
Over the last month FoodNavigator has been asking industry and readers for their views on how food companies can minimise their waste and put their leftovers to good use.
Below is a selection of attributable responses.
"Resources are used all the time and only through optimisation and control of resources can real savings be made. Saving fruit and vegetable off-cuts is fine if there is a market but collection and further processing may not be cost effective. In retail often the packaging, designs and printing costs are more than the product consumed. Control of packaging and using simple designs that use less resources to make would help make foods cheaper."
Marcus Maw, technical manager, Peaty Mills, UK.
"Whey is a good example of a waste stream that was turned into a money-maker by using the high value components present. Nizo also developed a process for the isolation of functional keratins from chicken feathers, a by-product of the meat industry. The keratins can be applied as building blocks for biodegradable materials, such as films, coatings and foams.
"Most likely other by-products or waste streams also contain high value components that can be used in feed, food or cosmetic industry. For that purpose Nizo food research developed a valorization scan to establish the valorization potential of these streams.
"Nizo food research sees many opportunities and has various technologies available for taste from waste (example savoury flavours from spent yeast), healthy waste (such as bioactive peptides form protein rich waste), safe waste (such as improving the waste by fermentation to serve as lifestock feed which in its original state would be unsafe to dump) and functional waste (such as biofilms from keratins).
"The available technologies include hydrolysis, (bio) conversion (enzyme reactions, fermentation), separation (membrane separation, chromatography)."
Dr Mieke Sibeijn and Dr Marc Vissers, Nizo Food Research, Netherlands.
"Associates of mine, Max Gonzales and Ric Goodman of 'Reserva Dorado', on both of their farms produce live stock food from the by product of their drying tropical fruits, and have engineers in Brazil looking to experiment with it in ethanol production at their Mango Farm there."
Harlan Cane, Mango Vivo, US.