Research project proposal Nr. „ Simultaneous recovery of proteins and microelements from food waste streams and the processing of agricultural residues into products with high added value” was approved under activity “Post-doctoral Research Aid” specific objective 1.1.1 “To increase the research and innovation capacity of scientific institutions of Latvia and their ability to attract external funding by investing in human resources and infrastructure” of operational programme “Growth and Employment”. 

The aim of the project is to investigate the feasibility of using agricultural residues (such as cereal straw) and food processing wastes (such as wheat husk and brewers grains) as biosorbents to simultaneously recover microelements and proteins from aqueous solutions (with a focus on the potato juice waste from starch production). Characterization of the mentioned materials, acute toxicity tests and the evaluation of the nutritional, agronomic and economic benefits will be carried out to identify the most suitable material that could be used in full scale systems. By converting agricultural waste biomass into a resource, a novel and a high added value material could be created, and which later could be used as an animal feed supplement and/ or soil fertilizer particularly in the organic farming. The production of the mentioned product would improve the sustainability and profitability of the agricultural and food processing industry, as it would reduce the costs of the waste disposal and would generate the revenue from the sale of the developed product. At the same time, it could supplement the currently used methods, such as reverse osmosis and ultrafiltration (which are expensive and suffer from fouling) for recapturing proteins from aqueous solutions.

The cooperation institution is The State Education Development Agency (SEDA). Project duration is 36 months. Total costs are 133 805,88 EUR where 85% is financed by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

October 12, 2018