TNO and Wageningen Food & Biobased Research are forming a cooperative framework in the area of food, nutrition and bio-based research to create a one-stop shop for our partners. Several Strategic Innovation Programmes (SIP’s) are set up to reinforce joint projects and complementary expertise as well as knowledge and facilities between TNO and Food & Bio-based Research. This will give companies of all sizes as well as governments better access to applied research from both research organisations. In the long run, this cooperation will strengthen the Dutch research infrastructure and improve competitiveness of our partners in worldwide food, nutrition and biobased markets.
Two Strategic Innovation Programmes are effective since 2015:
• Customised processed food for quality and health
• Biorefinery for the availability and flexibility of raw materials
With these programmes, TNO and Food & Biobased Research are setting up and executing public-private pre-competitive projects that aim to create new knowledge and capabilities within the framework of the Innovation Agenda TKI Agri & Food.
The Strategic Innovation Programmes (SIPs) are a result of the ‘Grand Design’ concept of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs. The ministry has formulated a need for a uniform planning & control cycle for the Dutch institutes of applied research. A ‘Grand Design agreement’ was signed by the boards of TNO, Wageningen UR and the Ministry of Economic Affairs at the end of 2014 and provides the context for the new programmes.
Food production and food consumption play a key role in solving some of the Grand Societal Challenges defined in the innovation goals of the European Union. To tackle these challenges more processed food has to be produced from fewer resources yet with more quality and a healthier composition, targeting individual needs. The proposed strategic innovation programme “Customised Processed Food for Quality and Health” aims to provide breakthrough technologies that enable efficient and effective manufacturing of food products that fit individual healthy diets. This will be instrumental in securing a steady supply of processed food that is implicitly healthy. It aims to empower consumers to take more control over the composition of their foods in relationship to their everyday needs, their lifestyle and their health.
In general, these challenges require new types of processing and processed food that are more flexible and can be readily adapted to both personal context of individuals and to the industrial context of changing availability, price and functionality of ingredients.
Currently two projects are executed within this programme:
• Protein functionality in complex matrices
• Healthy composition processed food products
Other project are foreseen in application areas that are relevant to the food industry.
If you are interested in one or more of the application areas or wish to know more about specific objectives, knowledge questions, impact assessments and organisation of the programme, download the full text of the strategic innovation programme “Customized Processed Food for Quality and Health”
Ronald Visschers is programleader on behalf of TNO.