Advance and progress of the PhysicsReuse project
Reus, February 18, 2021 .- The first year of the project focusing on its first line of work has been completed, with efforts targeting the physicochemical and functional characterisation of the raw material (rejected fruit and vegetable products). It has also focused on the products obtained through the technological process being developed by the project, with the aim of determining how that process can alter the composition of the resulting vegetable products. In this regard, the results showed that there are no substantial changes from a nutritional point of view.
Secondly, another noteworthy outcome is that the technological process does not significantly affect the functional components, including rich vegetable matrices (phenolic compounds, pigments, fibres, etc.) that provide health benefits thanks to their antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, among others.
Moreover, the potential of plant ingredients in terms of these beneficial properties is being studied through in vitro tests.
Another line of work focuses on combining these transformed plant products with other substances or ingredients to form a product that maintains its composition, regardless of seasonality, and has suitable technological features to be transported, stored and subsequently incorporated into feed for pigs, poultry, etc.
Thus, the ultimate goal is to substitute some of the raw materials used as feed ingredients (alfalfa, barley, wheat, etc.) with these plant ingredients, which, in addition to their nutritional value, could provide the added benefits of greater regulation of oxidative stress caused by intensive production or reducing the administration of antibiotics, among others.
Likewise, in addition to re-evaluating these plant products, using them to produce animal feed will help to solve the environmental problem of rejected products and the dependence on using and importing cereals for animal consumption.