From food waste to new raw materials

30 / 03 2021

The ever-growing attention to the environment is progressively transforming the way waste is managed since it is considered an expensive problem for many production companies. Moreover, the waste can be a potential “second raw material” and resource for new purposes and uses.

The working group of Professor Stefano Dall’ Acqua with the precious collaboration of Portuguese and Brazilian universities and the University of Camerino has studied and characterized the chemical composition of different types of the agro-food waste following various extraction procedures. Research has shown that, for example, chestnut shells are particularly rich in polyphenols such as ellagic acid and caffeic acid derivatives, the leaves of a particular variety of kiwi have an even greater antioxidant power than the fruit itself and the oil essential obtained from the residues of the processing of hemp fibre is an effective natural insecticide. These examples represent just some of the many applications for re-evaluating and enhancing waste for the benefit of the environment and various production realities.

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To discover more:

F. Lameirão et al. Green-Sustainable Recovery of Phenolic and Antioxidant Compounds from Industrial Chestnut Shells Using Ultrasound-Assisted Extraction: Optimization and Evaluation of Biological Activities In Vitro. Antioxidants 2020; 9(3):267.

G. Benelli et al. The crop-residue of fiber hemp cv. Futura 75: from a waste product to a source of botanical insecticides. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2018; 25(11):10515-10525.

F. Marangi et al. Hardy kiwi leaves extracted by multi-frequency multimode modulated technology: A sustainable and promising by-product for industry. Food Res Int 2018; 112:184-191.

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