A new match-making service will connect primary producers with local organisations looking for ingredients in an effort to create new animal feed products from by-product streams created during food production.
Using a new Bioresource Database, developed by partners in the Bioresource Processing Alliance, companies will be able to identify food production by-products as ingredients for existing or new formulations. This service will allow producers to redirect by-product streams away from landfill or low-value uses, such as compost, while providing opportunities for manufacturers to source nutritious ingredients close to factories, reducing transportation costs.
It is estimated that more than 200,000 tonnes of food production by-products could be redirected using the database if rolled out nationally.
“The by-products of food production, such as seeds, stalks and low-grade produce, are generally viewed as waste, but can hold value for other uses,” says Dr Richard Edmonds, from Plant & Food Research.
“Animal feed manufacturers, for example, are often looking for nutritious ingredients for new products and would like to be able to source these locally direct from the producer. Being able to link producers and manufacturers can reduce the amount of waste while supporting the development of new products, a win for both sides.”
The initial pilot version of the Bioresource Database is now live for the Canterbury region.
Scientists at Plant & Food Research, who have developed the database and interface, will be contacting organisations over coming months to join the database (via a survey) as the first step to resource sharing. The database will then use all available data to link potential users with by-product suppliers, including accounting for the transportation and processing costs that often limit the reuse of low-value by-product streams.
The Bioresource Processing Alliance is a collaboration between Plant & Food Research, AgResearch, Scion and Callaghan Innovation, which aims to increase the value of biological by-products from the primary sector.
Source: Plant & Food Research