5 years ago



132 this application

132 this application asks for a smart camera system with on-chip processing and data reduction to reduce the bandwidth requirements for data transfer from camera to grading computer and the computational effort needed for the grading decision algorithms. A second challenge for optical quality inspections in the agro-food industry is the fact that biological products are often layered and typically one is not so much interested in surface quality, but rather in the quality of the deeper layers. Also this can be tackled by this hyperspectral imaging approach. Imec wants to demonstrate the hyperspectral scatter imaging system in real-life settings for grading fruit according to firmness and sugar content. In a project with Flanders’ FOOD, which is the innovation platform for the Flemish food industry, the potential of these and other nano-based innovations for application in the food chain (food safety and quality diagnostics, traceability, packaging,…) are scanned. The joint project is called ‘Intelligence For Food’. Interested companies are still welcome to join.

Hightech Europe: fostering innovation in food processing Iesel Van der Plancken & Marc Hendrickx Laboratory of Food Technology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 22 box 2457, 3001 Heverlee, Belgium E-mail: Nanotechnology in addition to biotechnology and ICT shows strong innovative power within high-tech food processing technologies. Although excellent research has been carried out, this has not always led to substantial innovations on the European market. This European innovation paradox is at least partly due to difficulties in knowledge transfer. Especially for possibly sensitive developments such as in nanotechnology, it is of paramount importance that complete and clear information is transferred, not only from science to industry, but also to consumers and legislators. The approach of HighTech Europe, the first European food processing Network of Excellence is the establishment of a European innovation window for the food processing sector. The network will serve as the instrumental strategic incubator for the development of new concepts and ideas enabling competition of the European agro-food industry. To inform SMEs on potential cost-efficient innovations, the network will launch an Online Interactive Technology Portal. In this portal, a Lighthouse Watcher scans through scientific findings for innovation sources (with a special focus on nanotechnology, biotechnology and ICT), characterizes the underlying scientific principles and identifies target food engineering operations (the so-called Science Cube approach). These potential innovations are matched with industrial needs that are mapped within the project. Furthermore, existing regional knowledge transfer chains are interlinked into a Knowledge Transfer Tube to optimize R&D findings towards industry and to provide a Europe-wide overview of industrial needs. Sharing of R&D tasks, facilities and personnel is investigated. In addition, new routes for implementation are explored, including a Knowledge Auction, where knowledge providers present their unique findings to knowledge buyers. Successful 133

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