Foods of Norway researchers use modern biorefining technology, enzyme technology and fermentation to produce high-quality microbial ingredients from woody biomass which can be used as feed resources for fish and livestock.
Wood consists of three main constituents: cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. In the biorefinery process lignin is separated and used for high-value products, while cellulose and hemicellulose are converted into sugars and used in the fermentation of yeast as a microbial feed ingredient.
Foods of Norway develops feed ingredients and high-value functional products based on seaweed by using new cultivation and harvesting technologies and downstream processing methods. A major task for the centre is to upgrade the nutrient value of the seaweed by a biorefinery process to make use of the entire biomass in the fermentation process for the production of yeast.
The centre has a special focus on improving feed efficiency and robustness of fish and livestock by developing new methods that allow animals with improved feed efficiency to be directly selected, without having to record individual feed intake in large sea-cage production systems. Improving feed efficiency makes it possible to produce more meat and fish from local feed resources, leading to value creation through reduced feed costs and a smaller environmental footprint from food production.
This method has also been tested on livestock species such as lamb as a model for larger ruminants, with good results. This demonstrates that the technology developed for the blue sector is also relevant for the green sector. In a recently funded spin-off project, the centre will investigate whether the method also can be used to improve feed efficiency for dairy cows.