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News items
21.07.2022

RoBUTCHER was represented with a poster presentation at the Italian LCA Association Network that was hosted in Palermo (Italy) on 22-24th of June.

The conference focuses on the role of Life Cycle Thinking and Life Cycle Assessment methodological evolutions and application aiming to guarantee a green revolution at national and international level.

Clara Valente from NORSUS presented in Italian a poster entitled “a positive working environment”. The presentation regards the results of a literature review’ study carried out by Clara valente and Fredrik Moltu Johnsen in the project RoBUTCHER. The review concerns the potential social factors for achieving the highest quality working environment in a company.

The main purpose of this poster is to examine how Social Life Cycle Assessment (S-LCA) methodology deals with assessing the quality of the working environment, by identifying potential social subcategories and indicators with the aim to improve working environment. For achieving a high quality of working environment, the personal capacity development and the involvement of employees in company practice in addition to worker wellbeing should be considered.

News items
20.06.2022

På engelsk: Our researcher Clara Valente presented “Sustainability of innovative solutions for agri-food processing” at the final consortium meeting in the iNOBox project at Nofima, Stavanger on date 14-15th June 2022. iNOBox-A Technology- and Market-driven Innovation e-Toolbox towards a Sustainable, Competitive & Science-based Agri-Food Industry in Norway, was funded by the Norwegian Research Council in the BIONÆR programme (p.nr 281106). The research was carried out by Nofima, NORSUS, Veterinærinstituttet, University of Liverpool, Campden BRI, University of Zaragosa, TNO and industrial partners were Fjordland, Matvarehuset, Fjordkjøkken, Matbørsen, Advanced Microwave Technologies AMT, ELEA; Hiperbaric, UV Yechnology Ltd, BAMA, Findus, Den Stolte Hane and Hoff. The total project budget was 30 MNOK and the time period was 2018 to 2022. The project focuses on the introduction of “more efficient, profitable and sustainable processing, ensuring the supply of safe, high-quality and nutritious foods in the Norwegian food industry”. Here you can read more.

Our research in the iNOBox project has focused on assessing the sustainability of a selection of innovative food processing technologies which aim to preserve food quality and increase shelf-life by means of environmental and social LCA. The main goal was to show if the introduction of innovative food processing treatment can contribute to enhanced environmental and social performances in the food production chains compared to the conventional food processing alternative.

News items
14.06.2022

From January 1, 2023, there will be new and stricter requirements for separation of food waste and plastic waste! 

This applies to municipal waste (households and industry) and agricultural plastic. 

Read more about the requirement on regjeringen.no

The municipalities must achieve a sorting rate of at least 55% from 2025, 60% from 2030 and 70% from 2035. NORSUS (back then, Østfoldforskning) carried out the impact assessment together with Mepex in 2017, and has therefore contributed to the knowledge base to the design of the regulation

News items
24.05.2022

For four years, Erik Svanes at NORSUS has been researching on the protein rich crops from peas, beans, and oilseeds. – We have found answers to many of the uncertainties regarding this subject, and the answers are positive, says Svanes.

It is well known that plant protein products in general have a lower environmental impact than products from animal protein such as meat, eggs, dairy products, and seafood. Nevertheless, NORSUS researcher Erik Svanes wanted a more detailed and thoroughly examination of the effect of increased plant protein production.

In the four-year project FoodProFuture, Svanes did research on the protein-rich crops peas, beans, and on the oil and protein rich plants rape and turnip rape (oilseeds). These crops are collectively known as High-Protein Plants (HPP). Svanes worked in collaboration with other research institutions and enterprises, and central questions in the research were: Which role can the HPP have in our food production system? How do natural conditions and the limited agricultural land in Norway affect production? What about consumer habits? And will a change in diet affect anything else than the climate?

The research work being divided into several disciplines, NORSUS was responsible for the sustainability part of the project.

– We aimed to determine how Norwegian grown plant protein affects the environment compared to the food we eat today. The protein in the current Norwegian diet comes mainly from meat, fish, eggs, wheat and dairy products and we were interested in analysing the environmental affect caused by this type of protein food. The same analysis was done on the HPP and products made from these crops developed in the project, explains Svanes.

Another important aspect of the project was to investigate how the processing affected the raw materials. Some of the plant food benefits can be lost if the raw materials are processed in an inefficient way.

Erteåker
A field of peas is a beautiful sight. Thanks to NORSUS research, we also know with certainty that growing peas and other high-protein plants (HPP) like beans and turnip rape will contribute to lower environmental impact than the average Norwegian food protein. PHOTO: Anne Marthe Lundby


Several positive results

According to the research results, food based on HPP grown in Norway gives 5-10 times lower environmental impact than the average Norwegian food protein. This applies not only to climate, but to all environmental categories. The HPP result in far lower emissions and far lower consumption of resources than most other protein food products in Norway.

– In addition, it provides several advantages in agriculture, such as larger crops and less plant disease pressure for the subsequent in the same area, Svanes points out.

Although Norway has a small area of arable land, the population is also low. This means that the amount of arable land per person is on par with the rest of Europe. The research results conclude that HPP can have a significant role in Norwegian food supply and meet 10-15 per cent of protein needs in the future. A transition to more plant protein will also have a beneficial effect on the populations health if it replaces for example meat. Other advantages will be greatly reduced environmental impact, reduced pressure on arable lands in Norway and other countries and make Norway more self-sufficient with food and animal feed.

The research also shows that eating habits, attitudes, and values are very different from person to person and that this has a great impact on their diet. As a result, the environmental impact of the food eaten is very different from person to person. Such knowledge can be used for targeted measures to get consumers to eat more plant-based diets.

– This allows us to help consumers follow the authorities' recommendations for a healthy diet and to eat more environmentally friendly, says Erik Svanes, researcher at NORSUS.


Facts

  • Research project FoodProFuture (Innovative and Sustainable Exploitation of Plant Proteins in Future Foods) took place in the period April 1, 2017, to March 31, 2021.
  • The project was supported through the BIONÆR program from Research Council of Norway. Total framework for the project was NOK 39 million, including support from the Norwegian Research Council and the companies' own efforts.
  • Nine national and five international research partners were responsible for the research: NORSUS, NMBU, NIBIO, NTNU, SIFO, NLR, AgriAnalyse, SP (Sweden), JTI (Sweden), LUKE (Finland), VTT (Finland), CSGA (Bulgaria) and SINTEF.
  • In addition, 14 corporation partners from the food industry joined the project: Orkla Foods, HOFF, Mills, Gartnerhallen, BAMA, AM Nutrition, Halogen, Hozokawa (Germany), Norsk Matraps SA, Borregaard, Skala AS.
  • The main objective of the project was to build a knowledge platform for the production and exploitation of Norwegian plant protein resources for healthy and tasty plant-based products with a high protein content
  • The project was divided into a number of disciplines. These dealt with agriculture, processing, health, quality, sustainability, and the consumer perspective, as well as communication.
  • NORSUS conducted the research in sustainability together with the Swedish research institute RISE and in collaboration with the industry and research partners.
  • The research at NORSUS was done by Erik Svanes, as part of his PhD. Svanes has written a report, four articles (two published) and several posts at scientific and other conferences.

Researcher and PhD at NORSUS, Erik Svanes has written a report, four articles (two published) and several posts at scientific and other conferences during the four years of research at FoodProFuture.

PHOTO: NORSUS

   

News items
29.04.2022

As part of the work in the LIVESTOCK project a new paper has now been published. It is a life cycle study of the environmental impacts of pig production when the soybean meal in the feed is replaced by yeast protein produced from wood sugar. 

The raw material for the yeast protein is hydrolysed wood sugar that can be produced from wood through a biorefining process. In this study, two processes were analysed: wood sugar (Excello) from Borregaard and wood molasses that can be hydrolysed to wood sugar from Glommen Technology. These processes are not yet in commercial operation in Norway, so the data in the study is based on test production and technical calculations.

The wood sugar is further used as the main component for fermentation of yeast, which in turn can be used as a protein source in feed for pigs. The results show that when this is compared with standard feed that contain soybean meal, the feed with yeast from wood sugar will have lower environmental impacts, especially reduced loss of biodiversity. It will also reduce the feed-food competition for arable land. Although the area requirement per kg of carcass weight is greater if wood sugar is used in the feed compared to soybean meal, the forest area cannot be used for food production. The use of wood sugar can also increase resource utilization because the refinery processes can use residual wood that does not meet the fibre length requirements for the cellulose and paper industry, e.g. sawdust.

Read the article here: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1871141322001056?via%3Dihub

Photo: Håkon Sperre, NMBU

News items
21.04.2022

Our researcher Clara Valente presented “Social Aspects of the Pig Meat Processing Sector: The Way Towards Automation” at the International food automation networking conferenceSecuring the Future: Designing Robustness and Resilience into the Food Production System at Georgia Tech Hotel & Conference Center, Atlanta, Georgia, USA. The presentation was part of the activity carried out in the EU funded project RoBUTCHER RoBUTCHER.The conference focusing on robotics and automation in the food industry and scrutinizing new technology trends, industry challenges, and developing research was organized by the Georgia Tech Research Institute on April 3-5th.

Prosjekt
28.02.2022

Siden det norske dyrkbare arealet er begrenset, er det et klart potensial i økt produksjon og verdiskaping fra veksthusnæringen. Det er et spesielt potensial for både økt norskandel på tomat og økt forbruk, gitt at produksjonen blir mer konkurransedyktig mot import og at smakene treffer den norske forbrukeren. En forutsetning for økt, norsk veksthusproduksjon er at dette foretas på en stadig mer bærekraftig måte. Ny kunnskap om teknologiske løsninger for redusert energibruk, bedre utnyttelse av naturlig og kunstig lys for økt produksjon, miljøfotavtrykket fra veksthusproduksjon samt gode verktøy for å ta de rette beslutningene, er viktig for at BAMA skal nå sine mål. Den overordnede ideen er å skape verdivekst i norsk veksthusproduksjon med mål om økt norskproduksjon og økt forbruk av viktige veksthuskulturer, på en stadig mer bærekraftig måte.Dette skal oppnås gjennom bedre kunnskap om bruk av lys og hvordan man aktivt kan øke produksjonen ved bruk av lys, samt ved å få vurdert og utviklet et verktøy for å sammenlikne miljøfotavtrykket til ulike produksjoner av veksthuskulturer i Norge sammenliknet med import. Prosjektet vil være i tråd med og som en klar oppfølging av Grøntutvalgets rapport.

Report
21.02.2022

This report has been commissioned by the Norwegian Environment Agency and written by the Norwegiani institute for sustainability research (NORSUS) and SINTEF Ocean.
The purpose of the report and associated deliverables is to provide a basis for Norway’s reporting duties to the EU on food waste throughout the food supply chain (2019/1597/EC).
The food supply chain comprises the following stages:
• Primary production
• Processing and manufacturing
• Retail and other distribution of food
• Restaurants and food services
• Households
The EU states that “food waste is any food that has become waste under these conditions:

  1. it has entered the food supply chain,
  2. it then has been removed or discarded from the food supply chain or at the final consumption stage,
  3. it is finally destined to be processed as waste.” (2019/2000/EC, p. 7, original emphasis)
    Data on food waste must be reported annually but in-depth measurements of food waste are only required at least once every four years. The first mandatory reporting year is for the reference year 2020 (Table I).
    Empty fields indicate that data is missing.
News items
14.12.2021

On December 9th Avfall Norge, the Norwegian waste management and recycling association, held their Logistics seminar where results from the research project Innovative Waste Logistics were presented. Our colleagues Kari-Anne Lyng and Kjersti Prestrud presented the project and how calculations of costs and environmental impacts can contribute to more knowledge based solutions. In addition, Bente Flygansvær from BI Norwegian Business School, talked about how to reduce barriers related to the purchase of innovative and sustainable logistics solutions.

See (in Norwegian) here.

News items
08.12.2021

Today, our colleague Aina Stensgård will talk about the recent food waste figures at the digital food waste conference. 

The conference is streamed live on regjeringen.no/matsvinn. It will also be possible to see recordings of the conference afterwards.

The report NORSUS has developed on behalf of Matvett is available here.