Valorization of the Grape Pomace

PM-International and the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST) held their Kick-Off event for their common research and development project ActiVitis. The project started in February 2018. Drs. Christelle André, Pau Ferrer Alegre, and Marcus Iken came together to report about the project.

Circular Economy is a Global Necessity 

Worries about climate change and the increasing lack of resources have brought about an urgent need to move toward a more circular economy. It’s an economy that reuses and recycles resources for as long as possible. It also contributes to minimizing waste. LIST’s Environmental Research and Innovation department (ERIN) unites the necessary interdisciplinary knowledge and skills to tackle major environmental challenges our society is facing today. Dr. Christelle André stresses how the project ActiVitis contributes to the global endeavor: “It is incredibly important that we put the circular economy approach into the nutraceutical production.”

The common research and development project ActiVitis between PM-International and LIST is designed to find ways in which the product of biological waste, grape pomace, can be upcycled for industrial purposes. It aims at designing innovative and sustainable processes for developing new bioactive dietary supplements from Luxembourg winery by-products. They hope to develop a product which is both economic and ecological, so respectful of the consumer and the environment. Dr. André highlights an increased demand of biological goods from conscious consumers: “There’s a growing consumer awareness of the importance of bioactive molecules to maintain good health. Many people now want more natural components, instead of synthetic molecules. They want to benefit from natural, herbal products.” ActiVitis aims at meeting exactly those needs and being eco-friendly at the same time. That’s a win-win situation.

Idyllic Settings and BTW… What’s the Definition of Bio Innovation and Authentic Natural Recycling?!

The mild climate and the spectacular beauty of the hilly vineyards at whose feet the Moselle ambles, gives the Moselle region its quite unique character. This location situates PM-International’s headquarters in Schengen, Luxembourg, right in the middle of grape cultivation and wine production. In Luxembourg, 2600 tons of grape pomace are produced each year from the wine industry and are not recycled. It contains high amounts of bioactive molecules that are worth valorizing as food supplements. So why not use the wholesome by-product instead of letting it go to waste?

As a result, the company stepped up and together with the LIST discovered a sustainable and ecological solution in order to create 100% natural products from recycled grape waste, which is very rich in vital nutrients, vitamins and minerals.

Health Prevention

Epidemiological studies have associated the consumption of dietary plant products with a decreased risk of developing chronic diseases like cardiovascular diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. Tests, performed both in the lab and on living organisms and cells, have also stressed powerful properties such as anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-proliferative, and fat-reducing activities.

PM-International looks forward to the collaboration with LIST to facilitate a better management of resources and develop a new natural and organic agent that is applicable for the increasing nutraceutical production.

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