The InsectERA Agenda brings alternative food/nutritional solutions that will respond to the sector’s new needs, such as the increase in the world’s population, climate change and food waste. It thus contributes to the green transaction towards environmental sustainability, based on a circular economy.
ABOUT InsectERA AGENDA
The Mobilising Agendas for Business Innovation, framed in the Portuguese Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR), were created with the aim of consolidating and expanding synergies between the business community and the scientific and technological system in Portugal, helping to increase the competitiveness and resilience of the Portuguese economy, based on R&D, innovation and the diversification and specialisation of the production structure.
It was in this context that the InsectERA Mobilising Agenda was created, bringing together players from across the value chain who want to explore the potential of insects as a bioindustrial tool and bioindustrial solutions. The InsectERA Agenda covers the entire innovation cycle, from Research & Development to the manufacture and commercialisation of products on the market, based on technologically advanced production methods.
During the Agenda’s implementation period, from 2023 to 2025, multiple projects and initiatives will be developed to foster the circular economy and leverage the development of new products, processes and services with high added value.
MAIN OBJECTIVES of the agenda insectera
vertical fields of the agenda
Using insects as a healthy and sustainable alternative nutritional source in 15 new product lines for human food.
Use of insects as a nutritional source for more sustainable, locally-sourced animal feed with 8 new product lines.
Use of insect-derived products to develop four new raw materials for industries such as cosmetics and bioplastics, as well as nine innovative products.
The use of insects as a bioremediation tool and a solution to environmental challenges, such as the disposal of livestock effluents and urban organic waste, is aimed at investments in R&D and the creation of a research centre.
HORIZONTAL fields of the agenda
RAW MATERIALS AND PRODUCTION
The bioindustrial production of insects is based on the principle of the circular economy, using insects as a bioconversion tool. Insects are selected for their ability to convert discarded organic material (co-products) from other industries, particularly the agri-food industry, and turn something that would be wasteful and expensive into raw materials of high biological and economic value.
The process of bioconverting organic by-products has been developed and industrialised, and this field focuses on digitalisation and automation work to bring this process up to the efficiency and control levels of advanced industries, placing the sector at the top of international competitiveness.
transversal fields of the agenda
The process of biodigestion of organic matter generates a high-quality organic fertiliser that is quick to produce and stable, ready for direct application to the soil. This product, called Insect Frass, is made up of insect droppings and decomposed material.
All the products generated in the project’s various fields have an impact on human, animal and environmental health. This field therefore aims to carry out risk assessments and product quality and safety studies, including evaluating the ecotoxicity of products.
InsectERA conducts a wide-ranging study of the entire sector as a way of ensuring the transition of new products to the market, particularly at the legal level, consumer level, life cycle assessment, dissemination, human resources training and operation.