The project aims to build a knowledge platform for Norway to facilitate production and value creation from plant based protein-rich resources to future food products. This will be done by integrate knowledge on crops, composition of the raw materials, technologies, nutrition and health, environmental impacts in food production as well as consumer and market issues as illustrated in the figure above.
There is increasing global awareness about the unwanted negative environmental effects of livestock production, as well as possible negative health effects of animal-based food compared with plant-based foods. This awareness can explain the increased sales of plant protein products such as meat analogues, which is observed in many countries. At the same time, surveys show that a growing number of people refrain totally or partially from the consumption of meat or animal based products, as either vegans, vegetarians or meat reducers.
I dag dyrkes belgvekstene erter og åkerbønner i begrenset omfang i Norge, og brukes hovedsakelig til dyrefôr. Forskerne mener potensialet er langt større, både i vekstskifte for å øke kornavlingene og som et alternativ til importerte proteiner.