Fibre- and Protein-rich Low Calorie Food

Wageningen Food & Biobased Research is searching for industrial partners interested in joint research efforts to develop science-based formulation principles which enables producing low caloric food rich in fibres and proteins with desired sensory and structure properties.


Unhealthy diet is a risk factor for adverse health outcomes. Reformulation of processed foods has the potential to improve population diet, but so far the impact of food reformulation has been limited. Often only limited amounts of sugars are replaced while fat and carbohydrate contents remain high, resulting in high calorie density. Developing food products which are low in sugars, fats and starches but retain the mouthfeel, texture and taste of the caloric dense counterparts is a very challenging task for the industry. Sugars and fats provide both texture, mouthfeel and taste while starches are used as both texturizers and fat replacers. To overcome these challenges new food formulation principles are needed as opposed to the commonly used replacement strategies. That’s what we would like to achieve within this project.

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Novel food structuring and formulating principles

LowCalFood is a collaborative research project which aims to enable the development of low calorie foods with good nutrients balance while maintaining the same appeal to consumers with regards to texture, taste and structure. To achieve that, a novel approach will be taken where ingredients will be grouped in different classes (i.e. structure formers, fillers, humectants, plasticizers, etc.) according to their physicochemical properties. By using soft matter approaches to food, the project aims to develop novel formulation principles which challenge the common one-to-one replacement strategies. By using these novel principles, the project will demonstrate that similar oral processing behaviour, texture and flavor sensations can be obtained from synergy between ingredients from different classes. Within this framework, the functionality of upcycled (protein- and fibre- rich) ingredients and of protein and fibre microparticles will be also studied as functional ingredients for low calorie food. Finally, the project will generate rules for designing low calorie tasty foods from generic properties of the ingredients and guidelines for partners on how to communicate effectively the benefits of low calorie foods to consumers.

Want to join us?

This consortium is open for participation from ingredient companies and consumer goods manufacturers. To demonstrate the validity of the novel formulation principles, the project will focus on model food product belonging to different food categories: bakery, dessert, confectionary and fat-based fillings.