Milestone for Rubisco Foods: EFSA gives positive verdict on food safety of protein concentrate from water lentils
RAALTE, 18 April 2023 At Rubisco Foods, we were already convinced. Now it has also been officially confirmed that the protein concentrate that Rubisco Foods extracts from water lentils (duckweed) is food-safe. The EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) confirms this, having conducted thorough research.
Back in 2018, Rubisco Foods from Raalte made the Novel Food application, then still in the name of ABC Kroos. Following this, the European assessment authority launched a procedure that took a total of almost five years. But the outcome was positive! Based on this verdict, it is legally determined that the product can be marketed in Europe. In Raalte, however, they have to wait a while before doing so, as implementation of the legislation can still take up to seven months.
‘For us, this positive assessment by EFSA is the confirmation we were hoping for. Now we want to move on. We can now further develop our plans, says Sjoerd Jansen, General Manager at Rubisco Foods. ‘Currently, we are already operating from our pilot plant. Here we optimize our production process and produce samples. On a small scale, so to say. In the coming months, we will mainly focus on expanding our cultivation facilities. With the aim of increasing our scale. And, of course, we want to develop a sales market. To make this a success, cooperation is key. That is why we are currently looking for the right partners.
Why protein from water lentils?
The growing world population puts great pressure on the need for plant proteins. Not only do we want to eat healthier food; much more must be produced if we want to meet our future food demand. Preferably as sustainably as possible. The amount of land and water needed for this are important weighing factors in this and partly responsible for the ecological footprint of a product. We therefore aim for the highest possible protein yield per square meter of land. Water lentils score very well on that matter. That makes the crop so promising.
Furthermore, water lentils contain a high content of essential amino acids. The amino acid profile is similar to animal proteins such as whey and egg. Therefore, proteins from water lentils are a very high-quality ingredient and can soon be applied to make products more nutritious and increase protein content. Examples include Dietary supplements, drinks, sports bars and bakery products.
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