Promotie

Sugar beet leaves for functional ingredients

Samenvatting (Engels)

Green leaves are a potential source of food and food ingredients. An important leaf source in many countries, including the Netherlands, are sugar beet plants, which are grown in large quantities for sugar production. After the beets are harvested, the leaves remain on the land and contribute partly to fertilize the soil. However, these leaves can have higher value uses when applied in food. Therefore, the aim of this thesis is to understand the use of sugar beet leaves and to define process guidelines that lead to a sustainable use of this resource. For soil quality reasons, it is preferred to harvest only part of the leaves. The other portion of the leaves can be processed into specialized food ingredients and into protein rich fractions. Independent of the final product, it can be expected that leaves have to be processed already at the farms to reduce transportation needs, and then continue the process in a central facility. This decentralised process configuration is a suitable solution for the environment and for the best use of the leaves.