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DIT awarded funding for EU marine research project

Posted: 19 June, 2017

DIT and the Irish Fish Canners were awarded funding from The Marine Institute as part of the EU-funded Blueshell project, which explores the potential to create food products from shellfish waste.

Blueshell Research Project

The Blueshell project will explore shrimp, crab and mussel shells for potential bio-active compounds targeted at the sustainable supply of safe, healthy foods. The project aims to develop foods containing health-giving additives with potential applications in: anti-inflammatory activity; food safety and antibacterial activity against selected food bacteria and spoilage; plant health and plant growth stimulation.

About 70% of annual shellfish production ends up as fertilizer, low value products or is sent to landfill, incinerated or dumped at sea.

Dr Michelle Giltrap, the lead researcher on the project for DIT, explains: “Food waste is an international problem, potentially leading to many environmental problems. There is a need for reduction and recycling of our seafood waste. The purpose of BlueShell is to recycle marine by-product waste to create functional foods with nutraceutical applications for health and well-being, as well as food safety applications.”

This funding, awarded by The Marine Institute in Ireland, is offered as part of the Marine Biotechnology ERA-Net (ERA-MBT), an EU collaboration of national marine research funding organisations. Other partners in the international consortium include: ILVO and University of Ghent in Belgium, Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, National Research Council in Naples, Italy and Nofima Institute in Tromso, Norway.