On January 27th we participated at the Branchentreffpunkt für Getränke und Lebensmittelwirtschaft, which was organized by the Wirtschaftsförderung Mönchengladbach (WFMG). Simplified, the WFMG is a limited liability company whose primary goal is to secure or create new jobs in the region of Mönchengladbach and the surrounding area by supporting new product or start-up ideas in their early steps, e.g. by networking with suitable partners or by providing assistance in the acquisition of investors.
The event was of interest to GENAWIF because natural substances from plants are the key ingredients in beverages and food. A good opportunity for those who want to innovate in this kind of industry is certainly the SMART Food Factory, which was presented by Ms. Martina Sokolowski and Ms. Imke Weishaupt from TH OWL. This is a kind of research factory around digitalization in food production, which is expected to be completed in the middle of this year. It is worth a look for tinkerers in the food sector, as there will be experimental areas to test or design demonstrators or processes for new food products, for example. It’s certainly something we’ll keep in mind.
We also learned some current news on the topic of alternative ingredients in food. For example, in a presentation by Professor Sabine Kühn of the Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences from the Department of Oecotrophology, several new foods with alternative protein sources were presented, based for example on chickpeas or insects. However, Oecotrophology also deals with the necessary sensory impressions that new foods must bring to be attractive and tasty for consumers, such as color, haptics or taste.
In addition to these more closely presented topics, there were of course other presentations and participants. In short and although it had to take place online due to Corona, it was a good networking event, where cooperation opportunities were already explored through lively discussion among the participants after the presentations.
By the way, we picked up the tip for this event, for which one could simply register publicly, from a news article on the homepage of FOODHUB NRW.