The French case study aims to offer an alternative way of valorizing cheese whey – by producing a fermented drink. This will improve the competitiveness of small cheese dairies, who produce whey in small quantities and in geographically isolated areas, and often send their whey to wastewater treatment plants, biodigest it, or feed it to animals.
An “early-design making approach” maximised consumer acceptance by conducting market and consumer studies (Actalia Innovation, Petrel, in collaboration with J’aime mes bouteilles) in the developmental stage of the project. These defined and prioritised beverage concepts, including distribution mode. Additional studies evaluated environmental and economic impact (INRAE-Palaiseau; INRAE-Rennes).
After 2 years of work, the first innovative fermented drinks based on whey and fruit (or vegetable) juices are ready! They were developed by INRAE-Rennes and Laboratoires Standa, produced by Enilbio in Poligny in collaboration with Sodiaal, using whey from the Monts et Terroirs cheese dairy in Vevy. The process was adapted on a pilot scale and the drinks will be distributed in returnable and reusable bottles. This drink is perfect for an adult aperitif or a child’s snack at any time of the day!
This new drink comes in several varieties: sparkling with elderflower, apple or grape juices, and non-sparkling with apple/ apricot or apple/raspberry fruit juices. All drinks were tasted by about 60 people in a study by Actalia Sensoriel laboratory in Bourg en Bresse and two stood out as favourites: the elderflower, 77%, and the apple-raspberry, 69%. The drinks were also tasted by FAIRCHAIN partners on 7 December 2023 at a project meeting in Poligny and were thoroughly enjoyed!
The next steps in popularizing these innovative whey-based drinks are consumer studies in real-life situations for a final assessment of acceptance, and identification of the most appropriate business model(s). Environmental, social and economic assessment of the new “whey-based drinks in returnable bottles” value chain will be carried out with a focus on mid-term sustainability at a regional level.
On 26 October, FAIRCHAIN and four other projects funded on the RUR 06 2020 and RUR 07 2020 calls – PLOUTOS, LOWINFOOD, CO-FRESH, FOODRUS – held a workshop in Brussels in the presence of EC project officers to discuss best practices in cooperation that can be useful to other research projects. These include common tools and processes for information sharing, thematic working groups and joint dissemination actions. A report summarising the main taking from the event is available.
The FAIRCHAIN project was presented along with other EU-funded projects related to circular economy at a joint stand within Ecomondo – the reference international event in Europe and the Mediterranean basin for technologies, services and industrial solutions in the green and circular economy sectors – which took place in Rimini, Italy on 7-10 November 2023.
FAIRCHAIN was well represented at the Nordic Wildberry Conference, held in Umeå, Sweeden from 7 to 8 September, with four poster presentations summarising results of the project’s Swedish Case Study, which seeks to develop digital applications and business models to expand the local berry industry.
- Assessing sustainability of innovative solutions for forest berry picking in Sweden – Mehran Rad, Pegah Amani, Karin Östergren
- Bärräkna – A Web Application for Berry Pickers – Fredrik Nilbrink, Rebecca Lindmark, Victor Marklund, Alexander Wahlberg, Inka Bohlin, Karin Östergren
- Berries of the region – a System Demonstrator for Intermediate Value Chains – Alexander Wahlberg – Karin Östergren, Anna-Karin Karlsson, Pegah Amani, Fredrik Nilbrink, Rebecca Lindmark, Inka Bohlin , Gun Lidestav, Claudia Wieczorek, and Roger Uddstål
- Mapping potential location for bilberry picking with remote sensing, local field data and phone-application – I. Bohlina, A. Wahlbergb, R. Uddstålb, F. Nilbrinkb, E. Bergströma, P. Axensten, M. Ekströma, A-K. Karlsson, and K. Östergren
A new paper describes the data used to obtain environmental impacts – calculated by using life cycle assessment (LCA) – of the production of Feta, from cradle to consumer. It includes (sheep and goat) milk production, transformation into cheese, packaging and transport to wholesalers, stores, and consumers. The raw data have mainly been obtained through interviews and surveys with Greek cheese and milk producers working in a cooperative (seven sheep livestock and one goat livestock) and complemented by literature. This work was carried out within FAIRCHAIN’s Greek Case Study, where blockchain technology is used to improve communication of product attributes to consumers.
Samuel Le Féon, Andreas Papadakis, Gwenola Yannou-Le Bris, Julie Auberger, Dimitrios Chatzitheodorou, Joël Aubin, Caroline Pénicaud, Life cycle inventory and life cycle impact assessment datasets of PDO Feta production in Stymfalia region, Greece, Data in Brief, Volume 48, 2023, 109207, ISSN 2352-3409, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dib.2023.109207
A new session of the FAIRCHAIN e-learning programme, which includes two courses – ‘Introduction to intermediate food value chains (IFVC)’ and ‘From short to intermediate value chains’ – started on September 15, 2023.
After taking the course ‘Introduction to intermediate food value chains (IFVC)’ course you will understand the differences between existing FVCs, the development of an IFVC definition, the benefits and challenges in the transition towards IFVCs, and more.
The course ‘From small to intermediate value chains’ is designed for Short Food Supply Chain (SFSC) entrepreneurs interested in growing their SFSC, in other words going from a local to a regional business.