Even the most conservative among us, between one freezer bag and another, throw away a little food every now and then.
There is no other explanation why about 35% of food waste occurs at the end of the supply chain: shops and households.
But the rest (i.e. the bulk of the 1,3 billion tons of food waste around the world) occurs in the stages of production, handling, storage and transport, when food is most susceptible to spoiling in the event of inefficient infrastructures.
There are many companies that are taking action to tackle the phenomenon at all levels. Here are three technologies that will transform food waste and food scraps into new products.
Do not throw anything away
Nose-to-tail animal consumption is a growing trend in food sustainability, in the context of a general decline in meat consumption.
Introduced to modern cooking in the early 2000s and one of the main trends of recent years, it encompasses every part of an animal, from the entrails to the ears. However, many consumers are still unwilling to eat cartilage, or legs, or other parts, contributing to the growth of food waste.
To use meat by-products, a Singapore startup designed a method to ferment and process them to create an excellent meat sauce. Using wine yeasts and probiotic lactic ferments, this technique requires less preparation, is faster and requires less salt.
Ready, set, restart
Among the biggest food wastes, bread is one of the top three worldwide. Hundreds of tons thrown away every day by families or bakeries at the end of the day.
Recycling unsold bread into a probiotic drink is one way to reduce food waste and add value to bakeries.
The creamy drink contains live probiotics that are also suitable for vegans and lactose intolerant people. With over 1 billion live probiotic cells per serving, the drink can be stored for up to 10 weeks.
The first drink of its kind will enable bakeries to effectively turn leftovers into a high-value product.
From food waste to multifunctional fibers
When it comes to personal care and food products, consumers are increasingly rewarding natural products. Everyone becomes more aware of their environmental footprint, and that's good.
To keep up with consumer demand, a new technology has emerged from Ireland aimed at transforming plant food waste into functional fiber products for personal care or food.
Waste of vegetable origin such as carrot pomace, citrus peel, vegetables discarded because they are "ugly" and vegetable extracts will be bioprocessed, evaluated for their performance and customized according to the customer's needs.
The process will reduce dependence on current functional fibers such as agar, pectin, alginate and methylcellulose.
Designed for businesses with access to large amounts of biomass, the fibers can be used in personal care or horticulture and even as a food product in sauces and confectionery.