Reducing food losses and waste
According to the FAO, roughly one-third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year gets lost or wasted. Global quantitative food losses and waste per year are roughly 30% for cereals, 40-50% for root crops, fruits and vegetables, 20% for oil seeds, meat and dairy and 35% for fish. In developing countries, 40% of losses occur at post-harvest and processing levels while in industrialised countries more than 40% of losses happen at retail and consumer levels. Even if just one-quarter of the food currently lost or wasted globally could be saved, it would be enough to feed 870 million hungry people in the world. Nutreco has several solutions to reduce food losses and waste.
In order to reduce raw material losses and minimise the impact of inferior quality, we have developed rapid diagnostic tools that enable our customers to get the most out of their raw materials. In 2014, we realised a breakthrough by obtaining independent accreditation for our near-infrared (NIR) spectrometry of animal feed ingredients. This accreditation was unique, particularly because of its scope, since it allows us to offer cheap and fast remote NIR application for all key feed components as an equally accurate alternative to traditional expensive and time-consuming proximate analyses.
In 2015, we launched the Mycomaster to mitigate the effect of the presence of mycotoxins in crops, produced by mould that can easily develop in the event of adverse weather during growth and when grain kernels are damaged during harvesting and storage. This is a growing problem in animal feed production. The Mycomaster is a rapid analysis reader that gives an instant and reliable indication of mycotoxin contamination. This easy-to-use tool gives fast results and is cost-effective. Since mycotoxins have a negative effect on feed quality and intake, as well as on animal health, it is important that farmers and feed mills can analyse mycotoxins themselves and take appropriate action by adding the right mycotoxin binders to their feed.
In the area of waste reduction, our research programmes are constantly focused on the valorisation of co-products derived from the food production industry. They have excellent nutritional value as they often contain high levels of energy, protein and fats. With the intention to sustainably make use of co-products, it is essential to reduce product waste. By reducing the microbial contamination, co-products will remain stable for a longer period of time. Additionally, the dry matter content and the nutritional value of the co-product will be maintained for use in animal feed. In order to preserve the nutritional value of co-products, we have developed Revalet ®, a range of products based on a synergistic blend of organic acids and surfactants that are formulated to reduce moulds, yeasts and Enterobacteria in co-products. All products focus on shelf-life extension of co-products, creating high-quality raw materials that can be used for use in animal feed.