Protein-rich legumes and quinoa spotlight alternatives to plant foods

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EU-funded researchers found that chickpeas, broad beans, lentils, and quinoa are ideal crops for growing in Europe, creating a more nutritious, environmentally friendly, and sustainable food system. It states that it may be useful for the transition.

Not all crops are traded around the world. Some are important only at the local level and are usually eaten as part of the local diet. Due to their lack of international trade, these crops (called orphan crops in Western countries) tend to receive little attention from crop breeders and researchers, thus lagging behind in modern cultivation methods. I am.

Researchers working on EU-funded SMART PROTEIN projects are currently focusing on four of these orphan crops. Broad beans, Lentils, and quinoa are considered to be very suitable for cultivation in European soils. Currently, the crops are mainly produced in Africa, Asia and South America and imported into Europe.

The project team is studying these crops with the ultimate goal of developing healthy plant-based alternatives to meat. As Dr. Emanuele Zannini of the University College Cork of Ireland, the coordinator of the SMART PROTEIN project, stated in an article posted on the project’s website, the four crops are in another EU-funded project. Selected based on a preliminary study conducted by a PROTEIN 2 FOOD.

Nutritional and environmental benefits of four crops

Beans such as chickpeas, lentils, and broad beans are rich in protein, fiber, and other nutrients. They can provide a natural and nutritious plant-based alternative to meat. More importantly, in the movement to combat climate change, their cultivation is less harmful to the environment and helps reduce the consumption of animal products. The increasingly popular quinoa contains all the B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus, and nine essential amino acids. This protein crop is highly resistant to adverse conditions such as drought and high salinity soils (soils that impede crop growth due to high salinity). Of all the crops investigated by the PROTEIN2FOOD project, quinoa was found to be the most suitable crop for cultivation throughout Europe. “These crops are underutilized. All four produce It is an important source of protein and can play an important role in a sustainable diet, “said Paloma Nosten, Senior Communication Manager at ProVeg International, a SMART PROTEIN partner. In news articles Posted in Ingredients first website.

SMART PROTEIN researchers aim to develop next-generation smart protein foods that are cost-effective, resource-efficient and nutritious. To that end, they extract protein from plants and focus on the upcycling of waste foods such as pasta residue and bread husks. “These smart proteins are used to create ingredients and products that are nutritious, reliable, environmentally friendly, safe and part of our future-proof supply chain.” “Potential products and Ingredients may include new forms of plant-based meats, fish, seafood, baked goods, cheese and other dairy products. “

SMART PROTEIN (smart protein for a changing world. Human nutrition Environmental regeneration, processing feasibility, and promoting consumer confidence and acceptance) will be coordinated by University College Cork and will end in June 2024. 5 years of PROTEIN2FOOD (high quality development) food protein Through sustainable production and processing) business It ended in February 2020.

Cultivation of crops for the next generation

For more information:
Smart protein: Smart protein project .eu /

Protein 2 Food:

Quote: Plant-based alternative food spotlight (June 3, 2021) protein-rich legumes and quinoa on June 3, 2021 Obtained from -rich-legumes-quinoa-plant- Base food .html

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Protein-rich legumes and quinoa spotlight alternatives to plant foods

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