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Innovation & Technology Request

Looking for innovative ideas or processes to develop packaging material with antimicrobial properties for industrially produced sliced bread.

Country of Origin: Netherlands
Reference Number: TRNL20210518001
Publication Date: 3 June 2021

Summary

Dutch company active in food-ingredients is looking for innovative ideas or processes to develop packaging material with antimicrobial properties for industrially produced sliced bread within the frame of a license agreement, research cooperation agreement or a technical cooperation agreement.

This request refers an open innovation challenge.

Description

The Dutch company develops ingredients for the global baking industry, providing functional or nutritional ingredients to the baker that fits their particular product and processing needs.  

Industrially produced and packed sliced bread typically starts moulding after 6-8 days unless protected using preservatives. Current preservatives are mostly chemical by nature, can have a strong (off-) flavour and can also negatively influence the baking yeast.

Consumers are also demanding more natural preservatives which can often be less potent and cause organoleptic issues. When a protecting agent can be added after baking, loss of yeast viability is prevented but this may cause other issues. For example, spraying or dusting an antimicrobial agent onto the bread after baking is technically difficult, can cause health and safety issues in the bakery and would still not solve the taste/flavour and the naturalness problem. However, if an antimicrobial agent would be present in or on the packing material, several of the above-mentioned problems could be solved.

Industrially produced sliced bread is usually packed in loose polyethylene bags and an antimicrobial agent might be delivered through impregnation into the packaging material itself - or form part of a coating. Since the surface of the bread crust or crumb is not always in direct contact with the packaging a solution may be needed that releases a volatile antimycotic into the headspace after the bags are sealed. In such a case, the agent should only be slightly volatile at room temperature, but perhaps more volatile at a temperature of around 30 °C, which is normally the bread temperature when it is packed on an industrial line. In this way the volatile agent can sufficiently ‘fill’ the bag headspace and protect the bread within the sealed bag.

Where do you fit in?
The company is looking for innovative ideas or innovative processes in development or already existing technologies to impregnate/coat polyethylene (or comparable) packaging material with slightly volatile antimicrobial agents.

What's in it for you?
• An assignment to realize a prototype or pilot
• Access to facilities, technology, experience and global markets
• Possibility for a joint development project
• Possibility for a joint scaling up project
• Probability for a lasting collaboration
• Global network of cooperation partners and potential customers

Cooperation is envisaged within the frame of a license agreement, a research cooperation agreement or a technical cooperation agreement.

IMPORTANT:
This technology request refers to an innovation challenge published on an online open innovation platform till July 12, 2021. Organizations are invited to express their interest before the closing date. Interested parties can get additional information on the platform and browse freely through other submissions. However to contribute to online discussions registration is necessary. All submissions will get feedback by the company on this open platform. Mind that posts on this platform are not confidential. Besides open discussions on the platform, sharing of confidential information will be made possible on demand.
After closing of the challenge, the company will select some organizations for an online meeting to explore cooperation possibilities. In case there is still need for additional solutions after closing of the challenge, expressions of interest will be treated in the traditional way.

Expertise sought

•	Technology design
• Microbiology
• Packaging technology
• (Food) biochemistry
• Process technology
• Creative thinking

Requested partner

The company is looking for innovative ideas or innovative processes in development or already existing.

Type of partners: Start-ups, SMEs, large companies and R&D-institutes with experience in packaging technology and food preservation.

Role: to cooperate in the development of ideas and innovative processes to realize a prototype or pilot.

Type of partnership:
The company is open to several types of cooperations:
- The company could buy a license to get transfer of rights from the partners involving the needed technology.
- The partners could set up together a development research agreement cooperation to solve this challenge.
- And it is also possible to have a technical cooperation agreement. The partners can agree to share resources and skills to realize a prototype or pilot, such as access to facilities, technology and experience for further development of the project.

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