Proteins4Singapore – For a Sustainable Protein Supply by Means of Reverse Food Engineering and Additive Manufacturing
Within the framework of TUMcreate - the cooperation platform of the TU Munich and the Nanyang Technological University Singapore - the cornerstones for the "Proteins4Singapore" project were laid. As a country heavily dependent on food imports, Singapore wants to increase its own share of food production from 10 to 30% by 2030. The production of protein-rich food from alternative sources, such as algae, protein-rich plants or by-products of aquaculture, is a core concern. Due to limited agricultural land, low space consumption and indoor farming play a particularly important role. In this sense, self-sufficiency and sustainability goals (such as low resource consumption and regional supply chains) overlap in the project.
From a technical point of view, the focus of Proteins4Singapore is on reverse food engineering and additive manufacturing. Reverse food engineering is about how individual components of a food contribute to the overall impression of the product (taste, texture, nutritional physiology) and how the modification of certain components can lead to an improvement in taste or consistency, for example. Additive manufacturing opens up possibilities for bringing protein-containing extracts into product form in diverse and sensorially appealing textures. Both processes should contribute not only to establishing efficient and sustainable production methods, but also to producing protein products that meet the taste expectations and nutritional needs of the customer base.
Our chair, with Prof. Michael Rychlik as Principal Investigator, is primarily involved in the analytical characterisation of the corresponding foods. From our side, the focus is mainly on the determination of bioactive metabolites such as vitamins in the products in order to be able to make statements about the health effects.
Further information is available on the pages of the TUM School of Life Sciences and TUMcreate. A broad overview of the most important sub-areas of the project is also given in the following figure: