On 22 October in Paris, students from Wageningen University, part of Wageningen UR, won the EcoTrophelia Europe.
The competition saw teams from fifteen European countries developing a new food product which, in principle, must be ready to be marketed. The students from Wageningen submitted an alternative product for meat. Food & Nutrition Delta and the Wageningen University Fund (WUF) provided financial backing for the team’s entry.
The Dutch team, headed by Ralf Hartemink, programme manager of Agrotechnology & Food Sciences at Wageningen University, developed a meat alternative product called Chef.Lupin. The product is made from fermented lupines fortified with oatmeal. This produces a high-protein product, which is also a good source of fibre, iron and other minerals.
The researchers responsible for developing it did not only take the environment into account when devising their list of ingredients, but also ensured that the greenhouse gases emitted during the packaging and production process for Chef.Lupin are ten times lower than for a similar meat product.
The prize comes with a monetary award of € 8,000. The final of the EcoTrophelia was held during the international food fair at SIAL in Paris.
A good pitch
Kees de Gooijer, director of Food & Nutrition Delta (FND), was impressed by the level of the competition facing the Wageningen team: “But they managed to convince the jury with their good pitch and sound product. It was clear that the team had thought carefully about the technology, the flavour, the marketing and the financial aspects.”
Food & Nutrition Delta and WUF provided the financial backing for the Dutch team. EcoTrophelia aims to encourage students to work in the food industry, while also inspiring the food industry to embrace innovation. These two aspirations illustrate the extent of the Dutch sector’s capabilities.