ValuSect - Valuable inSects


Project Summary

At a time of rising population and decreasing resources, especially in a very densely populated area like North-West Europe, sustainable alternatives for resources for food are needed. Insects could also be one of them. As part of Interreg North-West Europe, the ValuSect consortium aims to strengthen the transnational cooperation and exploitation of research on insects as resources for the development of (semi) finished food products.

Currently mainly driven by demand from migrated communities or by the development of niche markets, the trade in insects as food in Western countries is limited but could be broadly expanded thanks to the ValuSect consortium. Its lead partner organisation is the Thomas More University of Applied Sciences. Together with this leader, 9 full members as well as 8 associated partners from 7 countries are part of this transnational project.

Approximately 30% of the EU consumers is willing to eat insect-based food, a practice also known as entomophagy. The ValuSect consortium aims to enhance such level of perception by improving the quality of the insect production and processing, including its environmental impact. Research will be done on the emission of greenhouse gasses, on the impact of the substrate, on food safety and on the shelf life of the food product.

The project will use insect species that are subject of a novel food dossier. It will focus on the development of an accelerator program for insect-based food products. In the form of various amount of vouchers for SMEs, this program will transfer knowledge to enterprises and actors from the whole supply chain. Such knowledge transfers between stakeholders will be key for the development of this market.

Improving insect production as well as consumers’ attitude are at the heart of the project which aspires to make insects a crucial part of the tomorrow’s more sustainable diet of North-West Europe.

 

From April 2021 onwards, the ValuSect project does not only support the development of insects for food, but also extends its research and knowledge transfer to feed. An additional vouchers call for feed will be launched at the end of 2021, offering the opportunity to SMEs in the insects as feed sector to also boost their business.

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Project Partners

Lead partner

Organisation Address Email Website
Thomas More Kempen vzw 4 Kleinhoefstraat
Geel
2440
Belgium
sabine.vanmiert@thomasmore.be www.thomasmore.be/en/welcome
Name Contact Name Email Country
Inagro vzw Jonas Claeys Jonas.claeys@inagro.be Belgium
Aberystwyth University Alison Kingston-Smith ahk@aber.ac.uk United Kingdom
Zürcher Fachhochschule Christine Brombach christine.brombach@zhaw.ch Switzerland
Stichting Fontys Marcel Roosen Marcel.roosen@fontys.nl Netherlands
Boerenbondvereniging voor projecten vzw Kristof Severijns Kristof.Severijns@innovatiesteunpunt.be Belgium
Teagasc the Agriculture and Food Development Authority in Ireland Carlos Alvarez Carlos.Alvarez@teagasc.ie Ireland
New Generation Nutrition Pro-Active Marian Peters marianpeters@ngn.co.nl Netherlands
AliénorEU Elise Regairaz elise.regairaz@alienoreu.com Belgium
BIC Innovation Limited Linda Grant Linda.grant@bic-innovation.com United Kingdom
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Züchtungskunde e.V. Dr. Bettina Bongartz bbongartz@dgfz-bonn.de Germany

News


15 mei 2022 – Ontdek de wondere wereld van eetbare insecten in Plantentuin Meise

Posted on

Op zoek naar een leuke, educatieve en originele familiedag? Het ValuSect consortium nodigt u uit om het fascinerende universum van eetbare insecten te ontdekken op zondag 15 mei in de Plantentuin Meise tijdens ons evenement "Bugs to the future - eetbare insecten: ben jij er klaar voor ?". In dit prachtige kader krijgt u de kans om verschillende voedingswaren met eetbare insecten te proeven en meer te leren over de insectenkweek in België. Read More


In the news



ValuSect's project counts 11 full partnersThomas More, Inagro, University of Aberysthwyth, ZHAW, Fontys, Innovatiesteunpunt, Teagasc, NGN Pro-Active, BIC Innovation, DGfZ and AlienorEU.

The project can also rely on 10 associated partners who will help spreading the knowledge on insect-based food and feed: Flanders Food, BIIF, Greenport Westholland, Eurasanté, Pole Valorial, Bio Treat Center, Food Processing, BAF, CCPA Groupe and the Welsh Government.

 

You can find below a description of the full partners:

Thomas More Radius- Lead partner: Thomas More is the largest university of applied sciences in Flanders, offering over 50 bachelor and master degree programmes and doing practical research.

TM is a fully fledged knowledge centre and engine for innovation and is located in province of Antwerp and belonging to KU Leuven Association.

RADIUS is one of the TM research groups and is a unique collaboration that has been established between the training Agro-& Biotechnology, Chemistry and Biomedical Laboratory Technology.

Aberystwyth UniversityThe Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) is an internationally-recognised research and teaching centre (of AU) providing a unique base for research in response to global challenges such as food security, bioenergy and sustainability, and the impacts of climate change.

IBERS' scientists conduct research on genes and molecules, whole organisms and the environment.

Aliénor is a European policies consulting agency based in Brussels. Working in full collaboration with the European institutions, Aliénor monitors EU developments regarding agriculture, rural development and food quality policies and provides legal and political advice to policymakers and stakeholders.

Aliénor promotes and disseminates the results of projects and uses its relations with policymakers and stakeholders to find support for the project.

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Züchtungskunde e.V.: As a non-profit association, the DGfZ represents the areas between science, administration and practice and between the scientific disciplines of animal breeding, production, nutrition and animal health. Their main business is dissemination of research results and information.

BIC Innovation Limited is an SME specializing in R&D and Innovation working with SMEs in the agri-food, bio-health, life sciences and other sectors.

The company main strengths are R&D and Innovation, internationalization, access to finance and investment, improving productivity, cluster development. BIC Innovation is a partner for the Welsh Government, supporting growth of the agri-food sector in Wales.

Stichting Fontys is one of the largest universities of applied sciences in the Netherlands and offers a variety of bachelors and masters programs in Dutch, English and German language.

Besides the broad educational program, Fontys performs in many practice based research through all the knowledge domains.

Currently, there are over 40 Lectorates (Research groups) active in practice oriented research with major implications for the national, regional and local business environment.

Inagro is an applied research centre for agriculture. It has a long standing tradition in applied research and individual and group advice to farmers.

Inagro does research on broad topics of agriculture: arable farming, horticulture, aquaculture, insect rearing, energy, crop protection, fertilization,…

Inagro has a online platform to give the farmers individual advice, based on analysis, audits and experience. They give group advice by organizing workshops, study tours, panel debates, etc.

Innovatiesteunpunt: their mission is to inform and inspire farmers about new challenges and opportunities and to support them with the development and implementation of concrete projects. Innovatiesteunpunt reach this mission by

1) coaching farmers with the development of early innovation projects and grassroots ideas;

2) Providing answers to individual questions;

3) Giving standard support on general themes;

4) Support farmers with implementation of partnerships;

5) Using different types of learning modules;

6)Organizing

New Generation Nutrition Pro-Active is focused on education, training and consultancy in insect rearing, value chains and business opportunities.

NGN has an extensive network in the insect sector, both in the Netherlands and internationally.

Key business activities include training services for insect rearing entrepreneurs, rearing and business model consultancy and international projects to bring insects into local diets and animal feed applications.

Teagasc – the Agriculture and Food Development Authority – is the national body providing integrated research, advisory and training services to the agriculture and food industry and rural communities.

Zürcher Fachhochschule ZHAW -carries out practice-oriented research projects on food innovations which either lead directly to new developments in companies in Switzerland and globally, or which bring improvements for our society. Researchers at the ZHAW are therefore in close contact with business partners and with public institutions. The institute for food and beverage innovations carries out research on food development and reformulation, innovations, sensory sciences and consumer insights.

And the associated partners: 

The Belgian Feed AssociationBFA strives for the general social acceptance of an economically and ecologically justified feed production. The best guarantee for the health of the present and future generations, because healthy animals ensure healthy people. BFA represents the interests of all her members (premixtures and compound feed manufacturers) in all the decision and consultative bodies.

Biif - Belgian Insect Industry Federation - is an international branch association, originally founded in Belgium. 

 The Biif brings together actors (commercial or not) of the edible insects market, both in terms of human consumption (FOOD) and animal consumption (FEED). The members are from all over Europe.
The BiiF is committed to help and support them.

Bio Treat Center:  is all about making better use of biomass.
A community of entrepreneurs active in the biobased economy developing new, sustainable products that contribute to a green society with a promising business case from biomass.

CCPA GroupeExpert in animal nutrition and health (livestock feeds). They supply products and support their customers with their expertise on animal physiology, feed nutrition and knowledge on raw materials (as insects meal for example).

Economic Interest Group Eurasantéis the Northern France services to a large range of stakeholders: academics, clinicians, healthcare professionals, companies, local authorities, etc.

These support services are: networking activities, design of collaborative projects, seek funding, provision of knowledge and thematic expertise, IP management, market and regulatory studies, workshops and international events.

Flanders' FOOD is a unique, strategy-driven platform that contributes to a more competitive, innovative and sustainable agri-food industry through innovation.

Flanders' FOOD strengthens the innovation power of the target group by increasing scientific and technological knowledge, uses an integrated approach to this end, and in this way contributes to the economic and social development of Flanders.
As a spearhead cluster for agri-food, Flanders' FOOD will further broaden the framework on which it has been working for the past 10 years. Moreover, cooperation will become (even) more important than before. The spearhead cluster agrofood will focus on cooperation across the value chain, cross-border and cross-sectoral.

 

Food-Processing Initiative e.V.“Connecting competences for innovative solutions!” - this summarizes best FPI ́s mission. The food cluster aims at strengthening the competitiveness and innovation capacities of companies in the food sector.

Their key objectives are:

  • Facilitating contacts across the various food chains;
  • Supporting and initiating collaborative projects for innovative solutions;
  • Dissemination and exploitation of new knowledge.

Currently the association counts 117 members.

Greenport West-Holland is a triple helix partnership between businesses, public authorities and knowledge institutions in West Holland. Parties work together on creating a healthy, vital and sustainable regional cluster, which comprises all businesses and organisations in food and ornamental horticulture sectors. Greenport investigates how to achieve this sustainable future, placing businesses firmly in the driving seat and with public authorities and knowledge institutions as facilitators.

Pole de compétitivité ValorialValorial accompanies SMEs/companies with a range of à la carte services, from shared to tailor-made, depending on the innovation issues.

Their core business: Identify, set up and support innovative collaborative R&D projects in 5 cross-disciplinary themes of excellence:

  • Food-Nutrition-Health
  • Food quality & safety
  • Production, processing and conservation technologies
  • Functional ingredients
  • Agri & Food Marketing

Welsh Government: is the devolved government for Wales, making policies and laws in areas including education, health, local government, economic development, agriculture and rural affairs etc.

You will find on this page ValuSect's publications throughout the project. The consortium will publish a litterature review, policy briefs, policy papers, scientific publications...

Literature review: Defining knowledge gaps on the sustainable production of insects for feed

Determining the Effect of Different Reproduction Factors on the Yield and Hatching of Tenebrio Molitor Eggs

Policy brief: Why selling edible insects is now illegal in the UK?

Entomoponics: combining insect rearing and greenhouse vegetable production – a case study with Tenebrio molitor and high-wire cucumber cultivation

Literature review: Packaging, storage and shelf life analysis

Literature review: Processing of insects as a whole or as fractions

Literature review: Techno-functional analysis of insect proteins and insect-based products

Literature review: Digestibility of insect proteins and insect-based products

Valorisation Potential of Using Organic Side Streams as Feed for Tenebrio molitor, Acheta domesticus and Locusta migratoria

Policy paper: Why should we feed pigs and poultry with insect protein?

Policy brief: Insects as food and feed in the EU

Consumer acceptance among Dutch and German students of insects in feed and food

22.04.22

The ValuSect consortium is glad to announce the attribution of €460.000 worth of services to 18 SMEs to boost their edible insect business. The selected SMEs will get help from our expert partners to develop their innovative idea, which will participate in improving insect production as well as consumer acceptance in North-West Europe.

After the success of its first call for interest last year, the Interreg NWE project ValuSect had launched a second call on 6 December 2021. It also generated a great enthusiasm among edible insect SMEs, as in total, 26 applications were received, coming from 24 different applicants.

“We are very happy to see a lot of interest coming from SMEs to receive our services. The growing sector of insect-based food has so much potential and we are glad to empower its development”, highlights Sabine van Miert, Project Leader, Thomas More University of Applied Sciences.

The ValuSect experts evaluated the applications and chose the 18 cases with the highest ranking. Each selected SME will receive services from ValuSect partners worth €10.000, €20.000 or €40.000, depending on the type of requested service.

The cases cover a broad range of topics, from developing a feeding substrate or a new fresh product to gaining knowledge on consumers’ tastes. Five selected SMEs  are located in the UK, three in Belgium, Germany and Switzerland, two in France, and one in Ireland and the Netherlands.

 

Here is the list of the SMEs which will benefit from ValuSect’s services:

Selected applicant

Category

Country

Dilepix

Food development and innovation

France

Ensectable

Technological services

Switzerland

Essento food

Technological services

Switzerland

Essento Insect Food

Food development and innovation

Germany

Fricket

Consumer acceptance

Germany

Grikaco (Yuma Food)

Consumer acceptance

Belgium

Inishowen Coop Ltd

Food development and innovation

Ireland

M-Food Natural Ingredients

Food development and innovation

Belgium

Minus Farm

Strategic business services

France

Mr Bug

Technological services

UK

Poseative (Small Giants)

Technological services

UK

Saved Food

Strategic business services

UK

Sibo

Strategic business services

Netherlands

St Hippolyt

Food development and innovation

Germany

Swiss Insects

Food development and innovation

Switzerland

Tor Royal

Food development and innovation

Belgium

Torf Tech Group

Food development and innovation

UK

Yum Bug

Consumer acceptance

UK

08.01.22

ValuSect's vouchers call 2 is now closed. Thank you to all participants for your applications. The answers will be sent in March.

 

06.12.21

 

ValuSect launches a second call to SMEs to help them boost the edible insect business in North-West Europe 

Are you a SME willing to develop your edible insect business? Apply now to our call for interest to receive vouchers! Earlier this year, 17 SMEs benefitted from services to help them boost their activities. The second call gives you the chance to become one of them.

The aim of the vouchers is to support SMEs in accelerating the development of insect-based foods in Europe. SMEs located in North-West Europe can apply for a voucher worth €10.000, €20.000 or 40.000 in services provided by the project partners. 40 cases will be selected over 3 years.  

 

Which services can we provide? 

A menu details the available services that can be provided by ValuSect’s partners. They include technological services, food development and innovation, consumer acceptance and strategic business services, all related to insect-based food products.  

Our quick look guide will give you an overview of the available services. 

 

Criteria to apply 

  • You belong to the food and beverage or agri-food sector and you are in, or want to become part of the value-network of the insect as food market 
  • Your SME should have an innovative idea for the development of the insect business in Europe 
  • Your SME should be interested in studying one of the three species included in the scope of ValuSect: grasshoppers, crickets and mealworms (Locusta Migratoria, Acheta Domesticus and Tenebrio Molitor). Proposals on other species will not be accepted, because they are out of the scope of the ValuSect project.  

It is important to note that the vouchers concern insects for food, and not for feed. 

 

How to apply 

Would you like to test different side streams as feed for your insects? Or analyse the composition of your final product? Submit your innovative idea by 7 January 2022. You can do so by filling the Application Form, the SME declaration form and the De minimis self declaration and send it to valusect@thomasmore.be. The consortium will inform the selected participants in March 2022. 

SMEs that have already been granted a voucher earlier this year can apply again for this call. 

A manual details the procedure, selection criteria, IPR, data protection and other guidelines for the vouchers.

 

If you have any questions, please consult our Q&A.  If you don't find your answer, contact: valusect@thomasmore.be. 

 

Please find all the documents below: 

Menu of services

Quick Look Guide

Manual: Guidelines for applicants

Application form

Data Privacy Policy

SME declaration form

De minimis self declaration

 

18.11.21

On 6 December, the ValuSect consortium will launch a second vouchers call. SMEs located in North-West can apply for vouchers worth 10k, 20k or 40K in services delivered by our partners to boost their edible insect business.

Follow our information session on 30 November from 11:30AM to 12:30PM (10:30AM to 11:30AM UK time) to learn more about this incredible opportunity!

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_lI0MRUEXS-iE6a-SztU88w

 

More practical information will come soon on this page.

 

27.04.21

ValuSect has attributed €410.000 worth in services to 17 SMEs located in North-West Europe to help them develop their insect-based food business. You can find them below:

Selected applicants

Category

Country

Native Foods

Consumer acceptance

Switzerland

Cepri

Technological Services

Germany

Protein Rebel

Consumer acceptance

UK

Biopolymer Solutions Limited

Technological Services

UK

Small Giants

Strategic business services

UK

Cricket Lab

Technological Services

UK

Entoinnov

Food development and innovation

France

Entobreed

Consumer acceptance

The Netherlands

De Krekerij

Strategic business services &

Food development and innovation 

The Netherlands

Entogourmet

Food 

The Netherlands

Horizon InsectsSensfoods

Food development and innovation

UK

My Pocket Protein 

Consumer acceptance

UK

Kriket

Food development and innovation

Belgium

Ravenfeed

Technological Services

The Netherlands

David Kremer-Schillings

Technological Services

Germany

SDP NL

Consumer acceptance

The Netherlands

Sens Food

Food development & Innovation

UK

 

15.02.21

Our vouchers call is now closed. Thank you to all participants!

 

1.12.20

Apply for our vouchers to benefit from services provided by our consortium to help you develop your insect-based food business! 

The aim of the vouchers is to support SMEs in accelerating the development of insect-based foods in Europe. SMEs located in North-West Europe can apply for a voucher worth €10.000, €20.000 or 40.000 in services provided by the project partners. 40 cases will be selected over 3 years.  

 

Which services can we provide? 

A menu details the available services that can be provided by ValuSect’s partners. They include technological services, food development and innovation, consumer acceptance and strategic business services, all related to insect-based food products.  

Our quick look guide will give you an overview of the available services. 

 

Criteria to apply 

  • You belong to the food and beverage or agri-food sector and you are in, or want to become part of the value-network of the insect as food market 
  • Your SME should have an innovative idea for the development of the insect business in Europe 
  • Your SME should be interested in studying one of the three species included in the scope of ValuSect: grasshoppers, crickets and mealworms (Locusta Migratoria, Acheta Domesticus and Tenebrio Molitor). Proposals on other species will not be accepted, because they are out of the scope of the ValuSect project.  

It is important to note that the vouchers concern insects for food, and not for feed. 

 

How to apply 

The application process consists of two phases: 

  1. Idea stage: submit your application between 1 and 31 December 2020 

Applicants should send the Application Form Stage 1 to valusect@thomasmore.be by 31 December 2020 at the latest.  

Successful applicants will be informed of their selection for the 2nd stage by the end of January 2021 

  1. Detailed stage: submit your application between 1 and 15 February 2021 

Applicants who received a positive answer in January 2021 will be invited to give a detailed description of the idea (via Application Form Stage 2) and prove it is in line with ValuSect’s objectives. The requested support should be directly linked to the services detailed in the menu. Successful SMEs will receive an answer in March 2021. 

 

A manual details the procedure, selection criteria, IPR, data protection and other guidelines for the vouchers.

 

If you have any questions, please consult our Q&A.  If you don't find your answer, contact: valusect@thomasmore.be. 

 

Please find all the documents below: 

Menu of services

Quick Look Guide

Manual: Guidelines for applicants

Application form Stage 1

Application form Stage 2

Data Privacy Policy

SME declaration form

De minimis self declaration

21.02.22

Our call is now closed. Thank you to all participants.

We will send our answers by the end of April.

 

17.01.22

ValuSect launches its call to support the insects for feed sector 

The ValuSect consortium launches today its call for interest for the insects for feed sector. SMEs located in North-West Europe can apply for a voucher worth up to €40k in services provided by ValuSect partners. In total, €300.000 are available to help the development of the sector. 

Insects are a sustainable source of protein which can be fed to many animal species: fish, poultry, pigs, dogs, reptiles… The ValuSect project aims at supporting the development of this growing sector, by transferring its knowledge to SMEs, a.o through this vouchers call. 

SMEs in the insects for feed sector developing an innovative idea in a technological, food development, marketing, communication and/or strategic area, can now submit their application to receive a voucher. The consortium proposes various services to help SMEs, such as establishing a comprehensive lipid and fatty acid profiling of a product, researching market opportunities or testing different side streams as a feed for insects. Once a SME is chosen, it will get support from one or more of ValuSect’s partners to develop the submitted innovative idea. 

What are the criteria to apply? 

  • To be a SMEdeveloping insects for feed products 
  • Located in North-West Europe (see country list here) 
  • To present an innovative idea for the development of the insect-based feed sector.  
  • Activities related to four insect species only are supported: grasshoppers, crickets, mealworms and black soldier flies (Locusta migratoria, Acheta domesticus, Tenebrio molitor and Hermetia illucens). Other species will not be accepted, because they are out of the scope of the project.  

How to apply? 

  • Fill in the application form by providing general information about your company and your innovative idea in the insects as feed sector  
  • Fill in the SME declaration form and the De minimis self declaration 
  • Send these 3 documents by 21 February 2022 to valusect@thomasmore.be 

 

The ValuSect consortium will send its answer to all applicants by the end of April 2022. 

 

Would you like more information? You can watch the recording of the information session held on 11 January or read our Q&A

 

Please find all the documents below: 

Menu of services

Quick Look Guide

Manual: Guidelines for applicants

Application form

Data Privacy Policy

SME declaration form

De minimis self declaration

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