Circularity to meet food system goals – Supporting a plant protein future

From harnessing on-farm processes to creating business models, VALPRO Path is turning
food-chain actors towards sustainable plant protein production for food and feed



Running 5 multi-stakeholder ‘living lab’ Innovation Production Systems (IPSs) with strong industry involvement delivering value for industry, market & society


Applying multi-criteria mathematical modelling & optimization approach, integrated Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment, sophisticated data acquisition protocol and sustainabile crop rotation planning models


Delivering 10+ circular value-chain business models tailormade for IPSs co-created with multi-actor approach

VALPRO Path is bringing comprehensive set of values and activities

Focus on 5 climate-resilient protein crop varieties across 5 European pedo-climatic regions

Strong industrial presence delivering value with & for the industry

Tools for assessing sustainability pillars and delivering crop rotation models

Rapid experimentation supporting business models development for industry

Why is the VALPRO Path needed?

The European plant-protein landscape is not fit-for-purpose. Void of premium supply chains that provide financial stability and independence to producers, current systems focus too heavily on the production of feedstock for the livestock/poultry sectors in an attempt to counter the bloc’s reliance on imported animal feed. Furthermore, current business models have been selected based on old value paradigms, with little consideration for nutrient capture, climate resilience, and circularity.

With an emphasis on underpinning economic value through nutrient use efficiency, protein quality, circularity and biodiversity, VALPRO Path is built on the principles of co-designing, demonstrating, and evaluating new models in an iterative manner.

VALPRO Path’s supporting elements will co-develop and exploit beyond state-of-
the-art technical/logistical innovations, demonstrating and evaluating innovation
potential through specific value chains across 5 ‘living lab’ innovative production systems (IPSs), designed to foster multi-actor engagement and interactive innovation across diverse regions, crops and economic opportunities.

This is a time of change and VALPRO Path is here to help. The origins and environmental credentials of their food products are important to EU consumers. Carbon neutrality, authenticity and traceability (provenance) all feature strongly in consumers’ requirements. Within plant-protein sector there is an urgent need to evaluate new paradigms
of production. Achieving this will result in additional income streams/profits for stakeholders along supply chains and can be used as a benchmark to demonstrate to citizens how the European Green Deal’s focus on sustainability can deliver new economic opportunities and benefits to society at large.

The current European plant-protein landscape is flawed. Heightened societal awareness of the environmental impact of consuming animal-based protein is driving the public’s awareness of alternative, sustainable sources of dietary protein. Yet, production systems are focused heavily on the production offered stock for direct transfer into animal sectors in an attempt to counter the European over-dependency on imported feed. In essence, there is an absence of premium supply chains, with farmers missing out on added-value opportunities that exist within the crops they already grow across Europe. VALPRO Path is focussed on changing this, with an ambition to co-design novel value propositions that support farming systems to meet Farm-to-Fork strategic objectives.

Dr. Ewen Mullins | Head of Crop Science Department at Teagasc and VALPRO Path Project Coordinator

Subscribe to get all information,

latest news & other insights about VALPRO Path


Project Coordination:

Dr. Ewen Mullins

Head of Crop Science Department at Teagasc and VALPRO Path Project Coordinator

Oak Park, Carlow R93 XE12, Ireland

Project Communication:

Prof dr Mladen Radisic

CEO Foodscale Hub

THESSALONIKIS, 57001, Greece

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 101059824.