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Development of natural prebiotic ingredients derived from Brazilian agricultural byproducts

Grant number: 18/22365-4
Support Opportunities:Research Grants - Innovative Research in Small Business - PIPE
Duration: October 01, 2019 - August 31, 2020
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Food Science and Technology - Food Technology
Principal Investigator:Ricardo Luis Araujo Dias
Grantee:Ricardo Luis Araujo Dias
Host Company:Verum Brasil Comércio Alimentício Ltda
CNAE: Comércio atacadista de produtos alimentícios em geral
Pesquisa e desenvolvimento experimental em ciências físicas e naturais
City: Botucatu
Associated researchers:Luiz Claudio Di Stasi
Associated grant(s):20/11699-9 - Development of natural prebiotic ingredients derived from Brazilian agricultural byproducts, AP.PIPE
Associated scholarship(s):19/25787-0 - Development of naturial prebiotic ingredients derived from Brazilian agricultural byproducts, BP.TT
19/25290-8 - Development of naturial prebiotic ingredients derived from brazilian agricultural byproducts, BP.PIPE


Plant-derived functional foods, in particular fruits, can be considered one of the most innovative strategies for health promotion, as they provide benefits to body physiology beyond their intrinsic nutritional level. The use of functional foods has been recommended in particular to control chronic diseases, as it requires prolonged use in order to obtain the desired health effects. The sales of microbiome modulating ingredients is one of the fastest growing categories in the functional ingredients market. Probiotic ingredient global sales reached US$40 billions last year, and prebiotic ingredients global sales are expected to reach US$16 billions in 2019.Based on the assessment of high-volume agricultural supply chains in Brazil, on the availability of large volumes of agricultural byproducts and on the prebiotic potential of the substrates, there is a very interesting potential for developing new prebiotic ingredients. Moreover, the use of these byproducts could represent a great environmental and social benefit for the local communities whereby these byproducts are generated.The activities include the detailed characterization of the selected raw materials, including nutritional profiling, physico-chemical analyses, contaminants such as pesticides and heavy metals and the molecular weight distribution of the fibers by liquid chromatography. Considering that the fibers prebiotic potential correlates directly to their size (oligomerization degree), enzymatic hydrolysis studies will be performed to assess the impact of the oligomerization degree of the hydrolysates and their prebiotic activity. Finally, the prebiotic activity will be indirectly measured by the formation of short chain fatty acids in the fiber fermentation studies, as they are the main metabolites formed by the fiber fermentation by the microbiome bacteria. The industrial players on prebiotic ingredient market do not rely on their production process as a factor of differentiation. Instead, the clinical validation of the functional benefits is the main competitive strategy to conquer and retain the clients. That strategy can complement - or even replace - the intellectual property rights on production process, by warranting the market exclusivity, at least temporarily, to commercially explore a given ingredient for a specific, clinically validated health claim.Our company's value proposition is based on the development of functional ingredients derived from existing, large scale agricultural streams which can be globally competitive. Upon the functionality validation for the studied agricultural byproducts, the next challenge will be to develop and scale-up the manufacturing process and establish a distribution strategy. (AU)

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