NextGenProteins conference takes place today! This final conference shows new paths for sustainable nutrition.
It took four years of intensive research – now the European project “NextGenProteins” is completed. On September 7th and 8th 2023, the project partners will present their results and visionary ideas for alternative protein production as a sustainable source of food and feed in Bremerhaven. The event is organized by the Technology Transfer Centre Bremerhaven (ttz). More than 200 international participants have registered.
Norway, France, the Netherlands, Denmark and even Japan – the list of researchers, users and companies represents the importance of the project. The topic of “proteins as a food source of the future” is moving the world. Traditional animal and plant-based protein sources are consuming too many resources in perspective. The goal of the NextGenProteins project: the sensible use of protein sources based on single-celled organisms (yeasts), algae and insects. Around 8 million euros from Horizon 2020 Funding have been invested for this purpose.
“The next-generation proteins will put much less strain on natural resources and have a smaller impact on the environment than many other traditionally produced proteins,” emphasizes Birgir Örn Smaráson, head of research at Iceland’s Matís State Institute and overall project leader. For two days, the experts from all over Europe will present and discuss new perspectives for feeding humanity at the Atlantic Hotel Sail City in Bremerhaven.
In the total of 15 thematic sessions, the protein-linked development of novel products to the plant-based burger and aquaculture feed to the cereal snack or algae farming are on the agenda. Food safety issues, value chains, new technologies and consumer acceptance of alternative proteins are also on the list of topics, with a focus here not only on the protein sources mentioned above but also on others, for instance from mushrooms, legumes or cell cultures.
High-profile keynote speeches will provide new food for thought and highlight opportunities for resource utilization. Speakers include Dr. Christian van Hoof of the Dutch One Planet Research Center as an expert on personalized nutrition and health care, and Ivo Rzegotta of the Belgian Good Food Institute on plant-based meat production and fermentation. Prof. Karen Wiltshire, deputy director of the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven, will speak on the interaction between climate, humans and the sea and the future of the German coast.
Also traveling to the NextGenProteins Conference will be Iceland’s Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Svandis Svavarsdóttir. “This clearly shows the weight that the topic of alternative protein production has in politics, research and business,” says Prof. Dr. Gerhard Schories, Institute Director of ttz Bremerhaven. “This conference is not just a meeting but brings new developments and ideas on the way through intensive exchange.”