Special Issue "Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products"

A special issue of Fermentation (ISSN 2311-5637).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 29 February 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Diomi Mamma
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Biotechnology Laboratory, School of Chemical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Athens, Greece

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Food waste (FW) is a global problem that has moved up the public and political agenda in recent years. It will grow in importance, especially given the need to feed the growing global population. Food is a precious commodity, and its production can be resource intensive. According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), food loss (FL) is defined as “the decrease in quantity or quality of food”. Food waste is part of food loss, and refers to discarding or alternative (non-food) use of food that is safe and nutritious for human consumption along the entire food supply chain, from primary production to end-household consumer level. The European Project FUSIONS defines FW as ‘‘any food, and inedible parts of food, removed from (lost to or diverted from) the food supply chain to be recovered or disposed (including composted, crops ploughed in/not harvested, anaerobic digestion, bio-energy production, co-generation, incineration, disposal to sewer, landfill or discarded to sea).
Current estimates indicate that, globally, nearly 1.3 billion tons of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted throughout the food supply chain. In the European Union, food garbage is expected to increase from 89 million tons in 2006 to 126 million tons in 2020. The contribution of the household sector accounts for 42% of this total figure. FL and FW generation produces an impact at environmental, social, and economic levels.
Currently, most food wastes are recycled, mainly as animal feed and compost. The remaining quantities are incinerated and disposed of in landfills, causing serious emissions of methane (CH4), which is 23 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2) as a greenhouse gas and significantly contributes to climate change. Social impacts of FL and FW may be ascribed to ethical and moral dimensions within the general concept of global food security. Economic impacts are due to the costs related to food wastage and their effects on farmers and consumer incomes.

The EU waste frame­work directive 2008/98/EC defines the EU waste management hierarchy as: (a) prevention, (b) preparing for reuse, (c) recycling, (d) other recovery (e.g., energy recovery), and (e) disposal. Similarly, the Environmental Protection Agency defines the following hierarchy in relation to FW management: (a) source reduction; (b) feed hungry people; (c) feed animals; (d) industrial uses; (e) composting, incineration, or landfilling.

Preventing the over-production and over-supply of food are the first steps to be taken in reducing FW generation. In the subsequent steps, since FW is a reservoir of complex carbohydrates (i.e., starch, cellulose, and hemicellulose), proteins, lipids, etc., it can form the raw material for a large spectrum of commercially important products such as biofuels (i.e., bioethanol, bio-butanol, biodiesel), enzymes, organic acids, biopolymers, nutraceuticals, and dietary fibers. The implementation of the biorefinery concept could be an essential part of the successful valorization of FW. Producing a spectrum of bio-based products, FW biorefinery can complement fossil-based refinery to a certain extent and address the major drivers for bioeconomy viz. climate, resource security, and ecosystem services.

The goal of this Special Issue is to publish both recent innovative research results as well as review papers on food waste valorization for the production of value-added products.

Dr. Diomi Mamma
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Fermentation is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • food waste
  • value-added products
  • biorefinery
  • integrated bioprocesses
  • bioenergy
  • biobased products
  • platform chemicals
  • biofuels
  • bioethanol
  • butanol
  • bio-diesel
  • enzymes
  • biopolymers
  • organic acids

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Developing a Microbial Consortium for Enhanced Metabolite Production from Simulated Food Waste
Fermentation 2019, 5(4), 98; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5040098 - 27 Nov 2019
Abstract
Food waste disposal and transportation of commodity chemicals to the point-of-need are substantial challenges in military environments. Here, we propose addressing these challenges via the design of a microbial consortium for the fermentation of food waste to hydrogen. First, we simulated the exchange [...] Read more.
Food waste disposal and transportation of commodity chemicals to the point-of-need are substantial challenges in military environments. Here, we propose addressing these challenges via the design of a microbial consortium for the fermentation of food waste to hydrogen. First, we simulated the exchange metabolic fluxes of monocultures and pairwise co-cultures using genome-scale metabolic models on a food waste proxy. We identified that one of the top hydrogen producing co-cultures comprised Clostridium beijerinckii NCIMB 8052 and Yokenella regensburgei ATCC 43003. A consortium of these two strains produced a similar amount of hydrogen gas and increased butyrate compared to the C. beijerinckii monoculture, when grown on an artificial garbage slurry. Increased butyrate production in the consortium can be attributed to cross-feeding of lactate produced by Y. regensburgei. Moreover, exogenous lactate promotes the growth of C. beijerinckii with or without a limited amount of glucose. Increasing the scale of the consortium fermentation proved challenging, as two distinct attempts to scale-up the enhanced butyrate production resulted in different metabolic profiles than observed in smaller scale fermentations. Though the genome-scale metabolic model simulations provided a useful starting point for the design of microbial consortia to generate value-added products from waste materials, further model refinements based on experimental results are required for more robust predictions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)
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Open AccessArticle
The Second-Generation Biomethane from Mandarin Orange Peel under Cocultivation with Methanogens and the Armed Clostridium cellulovorans
Fermentation 2019, 5(4), 95; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5040095 - 04 Nov 2019
Abstract
This study demonstrates that the consortium, which consists of the microbial flora of methane production (MFMP) and Clostridium cellulovorans grown with cellulose, can perform the direct conversion of cellulosic biomass to methane. The MFMP was taken from a commercial methane fermentation tank and [...] Read more.
This study demonstrates that the consortium, which consists of the microbial flora of methane production (MFMP) and Clostridium cellulovorans grown with cellulose, can perform the direct conversion of cellulosic biomass to methane. The MFMP was taken from a commercial methane fermentation tank and was extremely complicated. Therefore, C. cellulovorans grown with cellobiose could not perform high degradation ability on cellulosic biomass due to competition by various microorganisms in MFMP. Focusing on the fact that C. cellulovorans was cultivated with cellulose, which is armed with cellulosome, so that it is now armed C. cellulovorans; the direct conversion was carried out by the consortium which consisted of MFMP and the armed C. cellulovorans. As a result, the consortium of C. cellulovorans grown with cellobiose and MFMP (CCeM) could not degrade the purified cellulose and mandarin orange peel. However, MFMP and the armed C. cellulovorans reduced 78.4% of the total sugar of the purified cellulose such as MN301, and produced 6.89 mL of methane simultaneously. Furthermore, the consortium consisted of MFMP and the armed C. cellulovorans degraded mandarin orange peel without any pretreatments and produced methane that was accounting for 66.2% of the total produced gas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)
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Open AccessArticle
Deoxynivalenol (DON) Accumulation and Nutrient Recovery in Black Soldier Fly Larvae (Hermetia illucens) Fed Wheat Infected with Fusarium spp.
Fermentation 2019, 5(3), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5030083 - 19 Sep 2019
Abstract
Fusarium head blight (FHB) is one of the most significant causes of economic loss in cereal crops, resulting in a loss of $50–300 million for Canadian agriculture. The infected grain (containing Fusarium-damaged kernels (FDKs)) is often both lower in quality and kernel [...] Read more.
Fusarium head blight (FHB) is one of the most significant causes of economic loss in cereal crops, resulting in a loss of $50–300 million for Canadian agriculture. The infected grain (containing Fusarium-damaged kernels (FDKs)) is often both lower in quality and kernel weight, and it may be unsuitable for human and animal consumption due to mycotoxin presence. However, it still contains a considerable amount of nutrients. A method to recover the nutrients without the mycotoxins should be beneficial for the agricultural economy. In this study, our objective was to examine recovery methods of the nutrients in relation to mycotoxin accumulation in the insect. The FDKs were fermented with Aspergillus oryzae and/or Lactobacillus plantarum (solid-state fermentation (SSF)). The SSF kernels were then provided to 50 young, black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) for 12 days. Weight gain, chemical composition, and mycotoxin bioaccumulation of BSFL and spent feed were evaluated. After 12 days of insect culture, the BSFL grew 5–6 times their initial weight. While the overall weights did not significantly vary, the proteins and lipids accumulated more in SSF FDK-fed insects. During the active growth period, the larval biomass contained deoxynivalenol (DON), a mycotoxin, at detectable levels; however, by day 12, when the larvae were in the pre-pupal stage, the amount of DON in the insect biomass was nearly negligible, i.e., BSFL did not accumulate DON. Thus, we conclude that the combination of BSFL and SSF can be employed to recover DON-free nutrients from FHB-infected grain to recover value from unmarketable grain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)
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Open AccessArticle
Biodegradation of Residues from the Palo Santo (Bursera graveolens) Essential Oil Extraction and Their Potential for Enzyme Production Using Native Xylaria Fungi from Southern Ecuador
Fermentation 2019, 5(3), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5030076 - 23 Aug 2019
Abstract
The degradation dynamics of lignin and cellulose were analyzed by means of a solid state biodegradation experiment, using residues from the essential oil extraction of the Palo Santo tree (Bursera graveolens). As such, two native Xylaria spp. and an exotic mushroom [...] Read more.
The degradation dynamics of lignin and cellulose were analyzed by means of a solid state biodegradation experiment, using residues from the essential oil extraction of the Palo Santo tree (Bursera graveolens). As such, two native Xylaria spp. and an exotic mushroom Trametes versicolor were incubated on the spent substrate (Residues of B. Graveolens, BGR’s). The relatively high lignin and cellulose contents of the BGRs (9.1% and 19%, respectively) indicated the potential of this resource for the production of methane (biogas) and ethanol. However, the degradation of the lignin and cellulose content could be traced back to the relatively high activity of the enzymes laccase, cellulase, and xylanase, produced by the fungi. The results showed that laccase (30.0 U/L and 26.6 U/L), cellulase (27.3 U/L and 35.8 U/L) and xylanase (189.7U/L and 128.3 U/L) activities of Xylaria feejeensis and Xylaria cf. microceras were generally higher than T. versicolor (9.0 U/L, 29.5 U/L, 99.5 U/L respectively). Furthermore, the total carbon (TC: 47.3%), total nitrogen (TN: 1.5%), total phosphorus (TP: 0.2%) and total potassium (TK: 1.2%) dynamics were analyzed during the experiment and their importance for the degradation process highlighted. The results of this work might serve as guidance for future studies in dry forest areas, while furthering the understanding of the potential use of native fungi as ecologic lignocellulosic decomposers and for industrial proposes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)
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Open AccessArticle
Spent Yeast from Brewing Processes: A Biodiverse Starting Material for Yeast Extract Production
Fermentation 2019, 5(2), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5020051 - 24 Jun 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Spent yeast from beer manufacturing is a cost-effective and nutrient-rich starting material for the production of yeast extracts. In this study, it is shown how physiologically important ingredients in a yeast extract are influenced by the composition of the spent yeast from the [...] Read more.
Spent yeast from beer manufacturing is a cost-effective and nutrient-rich starting material for the production of yeast extracts. In this study, it is shown how physiologically important ingredients in a yeast extract are influenced by the composition of the spent yeast from the brewing process. In pilot fermentations, the time of cropping (primary fermentation, lagering) of the spent yeast and the original gravity (12 ˚P, 16 ˚P, 20 ˚P) of the fermentation medium was varied, and four alternative non-Saccharomyces yeast strains were compared with two commercial Saccharomyces yeast strains. In addition, spent yeast was contaminated with the beer spoiler Lactobacillus brevis. The general nutrient composition (total protein, fat, ash) was investigated as well as the proteinogenic amino acid spectrum, the various folate vitamers (5-CH3-H4folate, 5-CHO-H4folate, 10-CHO-PteGlu, H4folate, PteGlu) and the biological activity (reduction, antioxidative potential) of a mechanically (ultrasonic sonotrode) and an autolytically produced yeast extract. All the investigated ingredients from the yeast extract were influenced by the composition of the spent yeast from the brewing process. The biodiversity of the spent yeast from the brewing process therefore directly affects the content of physiologically valuable ingredients of a yeast extract and should be taken into consideration in industrial manufacturing processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Food Wastes as a Potential New Source for Edible Insect Mass Production for Food and Feed: A review
Fermentation 2019, 5(3), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/fermentation5030081 - 02 Sep 2019
Abstract
About one-third of the food produced annually worldwide ends up as waste. A minor part of this waste is used for biofuel and compost production, but most is landfilled, causing environmental damage. Mass production of edible insects for human food and livestock feed [...] Read more.
About one-third of the food produced annually worldwide ends up as waste. A minor part of this waste is used for biofuel and compost production, but most is landfilled, causing environmental damage. Mass production of edible insects for human food and livestock feed seems a sustainable solution to meet demand for animal-based protein, which is expected to increase due to rapid global population growth. The aim of this review was to compile up-to-date information on mass rearing of edible insects for food and feed based on food wastes. The use and the potential role of the fermentation process in edible insect mass production and the potential impact of this rearing process in achieving an environmentally friendly and sustainable food industry was also assessed. Food waste comprises a huge nutrient stock that could be valorized to feed nutritionally flexible edible insects. Artificial diets based on food by-products for black soldier fly, house fly, mealworm, and house cricket mass production have already been tested with promising results. The use of fermentation and fermentation by-products can contribute to this process and future research is proposed towards this direction. Part of the sustainability of the food sector could be based on the valorization of food waste for edible insect mass production. Further research on functional properties of reared edible insects, standardization of edible insects rearing techniques, safety control aspects, and life cycle assessments is needed for an insect-based food industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Wastes: Feedstock for Value-Added Products)

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Authors: Vassileios Varelas

Abstract: Background. About one-third of the food produced annually world-wide ends up as waste. A minor part of this waste is used for biofuel and compost production, but most is landfilled, causing environmental damage. Mass production of edible insects for human food and livestock feed seems a sustainable solution to meet demand for animal-based protein, which is expected to increase due to rapid global population growth. Scope and approach. The aim of this review was to compile up-to-date information on rearing of edible insects on food wastes as also the upgraded bioconversion of food streams to added value food and feed ingredients. The potential impact of this rearing process in achieving an environmentally friendly and sustainable food industry was also assessed. Key findings and conclusions. Food wastes comprises a huge nutrient stock that could be valorised to feed nutritionally flexible edible insects.  Artificial diets based on food by-products for black soldier fly, house fly, mealworm and house cricket mass production seem very promising. A part of the sustainability of food sector could be based on the valorisation of food waste for edible insect mass production. Further research on functional properties of reared edible insects, safety control aspects and life cycle assessments is needed for an insect-based food industry.

Keywords: edible insects; food wastes; insect mass production; sustainability

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