Crumbs from vegetable waste streams

Published: 04-01-2016

Food processing waste streams often contain valuable nutrients. ORFI-food, a Dutch company whose name stands for Oil Reducing Food Ingredients, has developed new applications for such waste streams. Carrots, red beets and green beans are used to create colorful crumbs for coating deep-fried foods and snacks.

“High-grade side streams from the food industry are a gold mine of untapped potential,” says Rien Vervoort, ORFI-food’s managing director. “Take the waste streams from the potato starch industry, for example. They are full of potato fiber, which is relatively rich in dietary fibers, proteins, minerals and vitamins.”

Less fat
ORFI-food has developed a technology to dehydrate this potato pulp and turn it into little balls, which are ground into fiber-rich crumbs. Vervoort tells the dehydration technology is promising. “We can also apply it to waste streams generated by carrot, red beet and green bean processing. That enables us to create colored crumbs, which opens up a whole new market. We could make special children’s products, or extra festive bitterballen,” Vervoort says, referring to a croquette-like deep-fried snack that is popular in the Netherlands.

ORFI-crumbs absorb up to 30% less fat than traditional breadcrumbs when fried in an oven. When heated, the nutritional fiber absorbs water, which then repels fat. The crumbs are one of ORFI-food’s responses to the low-fat, low-calorie trend in food products. An additional benefit of using these crumbs is that it reduces costs of the integrated total costs of the process.

Product development
The first vegetable-crumb product that ORFI-food developed is a fish nugget covered in carrot-crumb, Vervoort says. “This is a truly sustainable concept in all aspects. We’re collaborating with a company that converts fishery waste into fish nuggets. Small fry and cod waste are minced and turned into nuggets, which are then breaded using our carrot crumbs. Carrots and cod are a well-known and well-liked combination. Currently, we’re negotiating with retailers and fast food chains to market these fish nuggets.”

ORFI-food’s vegetable crumbs are low-gluten and additive-free. They combine well with fish, chicken, schnitzels,  deep-fried snacks, potato croques and more. “Our crumbs are a sustainable and healthy alternative to traditional breadcrumbs,” Vervoort says. “And they’re particularly well suited to low-fat preparation in an oven. They give products a great bite and what taste testers have called a ‘crunchy experience’.