The hundredth patent registered by the University of Udine in Italy is a disruptive food innovation completely made in italy!
Francesca Zuccolo, Aurora Gobessi, Greta Titton and Arianna Roi, all enrolled in the Food Science and Technology Master Degree can be seen as real food makers!
Their experiment started by chance, as part of one of the assignments of “Principles of Formulation“, held by Associate Professor Monica Anese of Food Technology at the Department of Food, Environmental and Animal Sciences at the University of Udine. The assignment consisted of designing and creating an innovative food not yet present in the market.
Their inspiration came from analyzing the current market trends of the food industry. Over the past few years, research on the use of alternative proteins has been increasing in response to the growth of the world’s population as naturally available resources may not be enough to feed the entire world. Among others, insect proteins stand out as their breeding has low costs and may involve the use of waste products from the agri-food industry. The vegan food industry is constantly evolving and expanding, always looking for new products to offer to consumers.
They came up with the final idea of a “non-egg“, wholly made by plant-based ingredients. The biggest challenge was to be able to combine ingredients that could give similar shape, taste and texture to those of an natural egg.
This vegan egg is a healthy and nutritious alternative for those who do not want to consume animal products. It is also suitable for people suffering from hypercholesterolemia, or egg and milk intolerance, and for those who suffer from celiac disease, or gluten intolerance. The nutritional table must still be studied with great precision. The students were able to develop an exact replica of a hard-boiled egg from the nutritional perspective. The result was a high protein product created from a variety of different legumes. The yolk contains a fat component from vegetable oils. The main advantage is that, unlike a natural egg, the vegan egg is totally cholesterol-free, gluten-free and lactose-free.
How do they imagine the future of food? Very different from the present one. More organic and healthy products, more ready-to-eat meals, and innovative products made with novel ingredients. It is difficult to accurately state production costs as their egg has only been produced on a small scale so far. However, the production time is very short and the process involves the use of simple ingredients.
In the coming weeks, the university will start negotiations with companies to turn the vegan hard- boiled egg into a consumer product. Their ultimate goal? Seeing their vegan egg on the supermarket shelves, of course!
The V edition of Maker Faire Rome – The European Edition 4.0 is coming! Join us at Fiera di Roma from Dec. 1 to 3.
The Call For Makers of Maker Faire Rome – The European Edition 4.0 is awaiting for your project on food and agritech. The Call is open unitil the 1st October: here for submitting your projects!
The Future Food Institute is partnering with Maker Faire Rome – The European Edition 4.0 for the curation of the agritech and food tech pavillon. It is an Italian-based non-profit organization with global horizons that aims to build a more equitable world through enlightening a world-class breed of innovators, boosting entrepreneurial potential and improving agri-food expertise and tradition.