A circular economy is restorative and regenerative by design. Resources are kept in circulation for as long as possible; everything has value, and nothing is wasted. With nearly half of greenhouse gas emissions coming from things we make and use, transitioning to a circular economy is crucial for halting resource depletion, preventing biodiversity loss, and regenerating our natural world. On June 9th, MI-AP hosted an AIMday (or “Academia Industry Meeting day”) to support innovative solutions to enable the transition to a circular economy.
The day was filled with important conversations about challenges effecting our industry leaders. Ten questions were submitted, eight of which were discussed in facilitated conversations at the AIMday meeting. A total of 48 people participated and in the days after the event, six project proposals were awarded.
Here’s a look at the projects that came out of AIMday Circular Economy:
Project #1 is a collaboration between researcher Elena Gomez Haro Aceves of Prairie Research Kitchen at Red River College Polytech and the company, Prairie Cricket Farms. The project aims to change consumer attitudes and toward entomophagy and help incorporate cricket protein into westernized diets.
Project #2 is a collaboration between the Myera Group and University of Manitoba researcher Drs. James House, Filiz Koksel, Erin Goldberg. The project will look at the protein quality of a novel blended cereal using wild rice and hemp.
Project #3 is between the City of Winnipeg and researchers Kelsey Taylor & Rotimi Aluko (University of Manitoba) Curtis Aab & Kris Maranchuk (Red River College Polytech). The project aims to strengthen waste markets in order to close the loop for sustainability in Manitoba.
Projects #4-6 are with the company BioTEI Inc. and University of Manitoba researchers who are working with moringo steno proteins. Dr. Qiuyan Yuan is leading a project on the development of biodegradable packaging using waste product from moringa seed processing. Dr. Nandika Bandara is studying a new protein extraction and processing technology. The last project is headed by Dr. Rotimi Aluko, focusing on protein isolation and enzymatic hydrolysis for improving taste while preserving protein quality and functionality.
We look forward to seeing the work that comes from these exciting new partnerships.