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First-of-its-kind, large-scale, lowest-cost, zero-waste biorefinery for the production of proteins for food and feed application from low cost sustainable feedstocks.

Project details

Type of project
Innovation Action – Flagship
Project focus
Food, feed & cosmetics
Feedstock origin
Agri-food waste
Feedstock type
Crop residues
Project period
1 October 2019 - 31 December 2025
In progress
CBE JU Contribution
€ 16 937 253,61
Call identifier


Emissions from livestock are a major contributor to rising CO2 levels causing almost 15 per cent of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, the amount of land devoted to food production is a major cause of a loss of biodiversity. Without action, the growing population and consequently increasing demand for food – particularly proteins – the situation is likely to deteriorate.

The PLENITUDE project will address this issue by producing food-grade protein sustainably by integrating an aerobic fermentation plant with a conventional first-generation biorefinery. This will help to meet the growing demand for protein without the impact on CO2 emissions or on biodiversity. The process will use sustainable cereal crops as its feedstock. The process will be highly efficient, with zero waste, while producing food-grade protein with a feed conversion ratio superior to current alternatives.

CBE JU-funded PLENITUDE flagship biorefinery
CBE JU-funded PLENITUDE flagship biorefinery in Sas van Gent, the Netherlands, while under construction.


As well as establishing methods of manufacturing proteins sustainably, and the contribution this will offer to the challenge of feeding a growing population, the PLENITUDE project will make a number of societal and environmental impacts. It will:

  • Safeguard and/or create a number of jobs. At the initial scale of production, this will be in the region of 200 jobs, as many as 4350 if the project achieves its longer-term goals.
  • Create employment in rural areas.
  • Provide access to a food source that is high in protein and fibre, cholesterol-free, with the potential to contribute to improving cardiovascular health.
  • Make proteins more available and affordable, with the potential to reduce the challenge of increasing levels of obesity.
  • Develop a sustainable mycoprotein biorefinery process capable of offsetting more than 11 million tonnes of CO2 per annum and reducing water consumption by 13.8 billion cubic metres compared to beef farming, globally.
  • Reduce the pressure on land caused by growing feed for livestock; this currently uses more than three-quarters of agricultural land yet only produces less than one-fifth of the calorie supply.

The PLENITUDE project seeks to deliver a number of specific impacts. It will:

  • Create five new cross-sectoral interconnections, linking biorefineries with business with two consumer food producers, a pet food producer and a business to consumer biopolymer company, as well as linking a mycoprotein company and a B2C pet food producer.
  • Establish five new bio-based value chains; one for mycoprotein bio-based packaging, one for mycoprotein-based pet food, one for meat-free consumer products one for meat extender consumer products and one for mycoprotein as a co-product to accelerate the growth of cultured meat.
  • Creates five new families of consumer products across meat-free, meat extender, pet food, cultured meat, and biopolymer packaging film categories.
  • Develop novel mycoprotein-based biopolymer packaging materials demonstrated at TRL (Technology Readiness Level) 6.

Consortium map

Project coordination

  • 3F BIO LIMITED Glasgow, United Kingdom


  • FOODCOMPANIONS BV Bilthoven, Netherlands
  • CARGILL BV Schiphol, Netherlands
  • VIVERA B.V. Holten, Netherlands
  • ANGLO BEEF PROCESSORS UK Shrewsbury Shropshire, United Kingdom
  • ENOUGH BV Zoetemeer, Netherlands
  • LIFE CYCLE ENGINEERING SPA Castellamonte To, Italy
  • CARGILL R&D CENTRE EUROPE Vilvoorde, Belgium
  • LACTIPS Saint-Paul-En-Jarez, France
  • MOSA MEAT BV Maastricht, Netherlands
Former member
  • FOODCOMPANIONS HOLDING BV Bilthoven, Netherlands
  • ALCOGROUP Bruxelles / Brussel, Belgium