Bringing food innovation closer to the market is not a grown-up stuff!

Young talents from Greece, United Kingdom & Slovenia won the Champions League in Food Innovation

While PEFMED is dealing with the stress test to measure how far the Mediterranean companies are from the product environmental footprint requirements, a pool of young innovators are pushing up some brilliant ideas to green the agrofood sector and improve the consumers’ trends of tomorrow.

This is happening in ECOTROPHELIA Europe, where the key words are “visionary food innovations that are tasty, sustainable, responsible and of high nutritional quality”. ECOTROPHELIA Europe constitutes a life-size innovation laboratory for universities and students and a pedagogical model recognized by the European Commission. The competition offers a ground for fruitful exchanges between education and research sectors and the business world. For professionals from the food industries, ECOTROPHELIA is a great pool of talent, skill-sets and innovation.

At the European Food Innovation Student Awards finals, held on 21st and 22nd November 2017 in the frame of the FoodMattersLive exhibition in London, the jury distinguished 5 particularly innovative products among the 16 finalists (Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, United Kingdom).

The Europe Gold prize is won by the National Technical University of Athens, School of Chemical Engineering for the “AVOYOG“, a functional eco-friendly innovative smoothie beverage from avocado and Greek yoghurt whey.

The University of Reading achieved the second place with the “Yasai Cauliflower Rice Sushi“, a cauliflower rice rolls filled with carrot, cauliflower leaf, pickled beetroot, cucumber and spinach, whilst the University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty, has classified on the third place.

With 16 participating countries, ECOTROPHELIA confirmed, once more its position of European leader laboratory in food innovation.

ECOTROPHELIA 2017 achieved its goal of bringing together students, teachers, researchers and professionals of the food sector in a network to think about tomorrow’s eco-innovative food products. The future food engineers imagination is pushing forward the food industry in order to conceive together tomorrow’s food.

A pool of talent, skills and innovation for the food industry, an educational model for higher education in Europe, ECOTROPHELIA Europe has from 2011 motivated the organization of 115 national competitions, involving 550 universities and more than 3500 students. A hundred of products issued from ECOTROPHELIA Europe have been manufactured and reached the market.

The PEFMED project is looking with interest at this kind of initiatives, since it has the ambition to promote entrepreneurship and competitiveness within the Mediterranean agrofood industry by implementing a network of excellence in green innovation. Hence, the switch to greener production standards much depends on a radical change in the companies’ minds and young generations could definitely lead the transition.

Fotini Salta

Dr Fotini Salta is a Chemist with a PhD in Food Chemistry and Nutrition and a MSc in Environmental Chemistry. She has research and teaching experience in food Science and Nutrition

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