The main objective of the PROGRESO project is to study and establish the mechanisms and technologies necessary to obtain new protein-rich foods from alternative protein sources. The project not only studies the nutritional protein supply to the bulk of the population but also investigates products for groups with specific nutritional needs such as seniors, sportsmen, pregnant women, infants, people with allergies and food intolerances, etc.
The project aims to provide new knowledge and technologies that allow the use of protein raw materials, currently not exploited or considered as by-products of the food industry, as a source of high quality for human consumption. The results obtained will provide solutions to a great social challenges of the future: feeding the growing population, contributing, in parallel, to improving the environmental sustainability of the food sector, increasing the rational use of land and reducing consumption energy and resources associated with the activities of the food sector, as well as the introduction into the agro-food chain of by-products as added value ingredients, thus promoting circular economy.
In the framework of PROGRESO, a Virtual Cupping Platform will be developed. It is a computer tool that will allow to store all the information related to common and alternative protein sources, and then to create combinations to obtain mixtures appropriate for each food matrix and for the population to which it is made for. This platform will be an innovative work mechanic for the food sector.
As for the food to be developed throughout the project, there will be a wide variety of products such as: non-alcoholic beer, soft drinks, meat products, confectionery, purees, biscuits, jams, preserves, juices and animal feed.
PROGRESO has been approved in the 2015 call for the CIEN strategic program, managed by the Center for Industrial Technological Development (CDTI). This program finances large industrial research and experimental development projects, in collaboration with business groups and aimed at conducting a planned research in strategic areas of the future and with a potential internationalisation.
The PROGRESO consortium is composed of eight Spanish companies with extensive experience in their respective fields of work. The companies are the following: PAYMSA, leading company of the project, specializing in flavorings and additives preparations for the meat sector; ALGAENERGY S.A., in the field of microalgae biotechnology and the development of nutritional, agricultural, cosmetic and energy products; GO FRUSELVA S.L., is a company dedicated to the production and co-manufacturing of juices, nectars, smoothies, fruit and vegetable purees; GUMENDI S.L., dedicated to the ecological production of fruit; MAHOU-SAN MIGUEL S.A., a company dedicated to the production and distribution of beer, water and soft drinks; SIRO AGUILAR S.L.U., belonging to Grupo Siro, a leading business group in the food sector, present in the business of cookies, pasta, bread, pastry, pastry and cereals; SUBPRODUCTS TUERO S.L., belonging to the Siro Group, focuses its activity on the valorization of food by-products to convert them into raw material for animal feed.
The project PROGRESO also collaborates with nine important research organizations, including Universities, Research Institutes and Technology Centers, such as the LEITAT Technology Center, scientific coordinator of the project; Institute of Sanitary Research of the University Hospital La Paz (Idi-PAZ); AINIA Technology Center; International Center for Numerical Methods of Engineering (CIMNE); National Association of Manufacturers of Canned Fish and Seafood (ANFACO-CECOPESCA); Lurederra Technology Center; Unit for Virtual Teaching (UDV); CARTIF Technological Center; And Center for Veterinary Health Surveillance (VISAVET).