The program to support fermentation R&I was piloted three months ago by L’Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRAE) and the Association Nationale des Industries Alimentaires (I’ANIA). The research-innovation project already brings together around thirty public and private players, from academic research to cooperatives, start-ups and corporations. The Grand Défi Ferments du Futur launched operationally on the 12 December with the first meeting of its strategic orientation committee, which will contribute to operational and financial functions.
The aim is to allow facilitate interactions between experts and support a better understanding of the ‘key role’ of fermentation and fermented foods in human health.
“An ambitious part of this program will be to better describe and understand the historical and close link between the consumption of fermented foods and human health. The description of fermented foods should help us better characterise these complex ecosystems and their roles in our health,” noted Sylvie Binda, Lallemand Health Solutions Vice President of Research and Development.
The participation of companies like Lallemand will ‘strengthen knowledge and innovation around fermentation’, the company suggested. Since 2012, Lallemand has been involved in the development of the program, defining its objectives and content.
“Lallemand is joining the Grand Défi Ferments du Futur in order to share its historical expertise in fermentation and its scientific skills while benefiting from a technical platform, state-of-the-art equipment and resources in order to develop fermentation solutions for the food industry in a collaborative approach,” explained Patrice Laforce, Research and Development Director, Lallemand Specialty Cultures. “Among the objectives of the consortium, we wish to develop, mainly through applied research and short-term projects, solutions that will be quickly applicable on the market. This is in line with Lallemand’s research and development strategy.”
According to Damien Paineau, Executive Director of Ferments du Futur, innovation efforts could help the development of a more efficient and less wasteful food system.
“Fermented foods and beverages are already a major part of our diet. By exploring the tremendous innovation potential of ferments, we will not only develop new foods based on vegetables, cereals, legumes, milk or fruit, but also find value in products that are currently considered waste. This program therefore aims to make a very concrete contribution to transitions towards healthy, safe and sustainable food for future generations," he said.