Western Australia plant protein trial leverages Green Economy Agreement

In October, Australia and Singapore signed a landmark Green Economy Agreement (GEA) to bilaterally strengthen trade and investment...
November 23, 2022 AU/NZ news
Western Australia plant protein trial leverages Green Economy Agreement
FIPWA and Whole. representatives exploring South Australian legume potential (Credit: FIPWA)

In October, Australia and Singapore signed a landmark Green Economy Agreement (GEA) to bilaterally strengthen trade and investment in clean energy initiatives as both nations show resolve to transition to net zero. The AU Government has contributed an initial $19.6M over four years to take action on climate change whilst supporting job creation and growth by encouraging Australian businesses to seize this economic opportunity.

This news has been celebrated by the Food Innovation Precinct Western Australia (FIPWA) as it correlates with the recently created Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Western Australia and Singapore that aims to propel the adoption of innovative plant-based proteins within consumer markets whilst collectively lowering carbon footprints through sustainable food product consumption within the APAC region. The MOU also established a ‘plant protein production trial’ as a first action in reaching this goal.  

Under the GEA, the AU Government’s plans to invest specifically in promoting collaborations between the two region’s businesses that are boosting new green growth sectors and facilitating trade could mean initiatives like the plant protein production trial can receive government funding. 

The FIPWA trial comprises both businesses and government plans to explore the potential of using WA legumes to create a high protein concentrate that can be used by Singaporean energy efficient food manufacturers to produce a range of low-emission plant-based protein ingredients and products. 

“Findings and results of this trial will demonstrate capacity across the value chain of activity to meet market need, which will open up opportunities to supply legume protein concentrate at scale, considering broader viability and commercial factors,” shared FIPWA General Manager Dr. Chris Vas.

Local Western Australian participants Whole., a plant nutrient extraction specialist, the Shire of Murray and the Peel Development Commission will collaborate with Singapore-based Life3 Biotech, an R&D-focused agri-food company, to try and unlock this potential. 

Whole. will contribute its proprietary processing technology, referred to as Whole Ingredient Nutrient Extraction (WINX™), for protein extraction during the trial. 

“The WINX™ process has been developed for the purpose of achieving controlled high-pressure lysis of various plant-based inputs as a means of creating highly functional plant-based ingredients and flavours,” said Whole. CEO and Co-Founder Nick Stamatiou.

The trial is slated to begin with processing batches of high protein legumes including faba beans and lupins. 

Life3 Biotech has also been developing various processing technologies for protein production that prioritise energy efficiency with low raw material wastage. 

Life3 Biotech CEO Ricky Lin said the company will test the protein concentrates developed in the trial for suitability across a range of functional plant-based products. 

READ MORE: Green Economy Agreement signed with Singapore [Food & Drink Business]
Australia-Singapore landmark Green Economy Agreement [Minister for Trade and Tourism]

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