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European project for separating eggshell and its membrane to turn eggshell waste into valuable source materials in an easy and environmentally friendly way[edit]

Shellbrane[edit]

SHELLBRANE
Information
Framework Programme FP7
Project type Research for the Benefit of SME-s
Start May, 2012
Duration 24 months
Website http://www.shellbrane.eu


Introduction[edit]

Egg processors produce hazardous waste in the form of eggshells that incurs an annual disposal cost of about EUR 100 000. However, eggshell membranes contain hyaluronic acid and collagen that are of considerable value to the nutritional and cosmetic industries.

The main goal of the project was to develop a method for the industrial-scale separation of avian eggshell and its membrane. This core process is followed by a drying and packaging mechanism to make the way-to-market easy. This will provide an easy solution to the waste problem of egg processors and putting to the market a valuable raw material for the industry.


The prime economic, scientific objectives[edit]

Agricultural waste management is one of the most emerging problems of food processors. The amount of the generated waste as well as the cost of waste disposal is ever increasing across Europe. Egg processors face the problem of the disposal of eggshell waste. According to EC regulations, industrial egg-shell is considered as hazardous waste and it is collected by national authorities. This can result in cost of the order of €100,000 per year in case of small or medium sized egg-processors. However, eggshell is a valuable source material or the additive for numerous branches of the industry, such as, among others fodder and fertilizer producers, paper manufacturers. Numerous types of collagens, hyaluronic acid, or amino acids of interest may be extracted from the egg shell membrane and purified for numerous uses (e.g. dietary supplements, cosmetics), which makes the separated eggshell membrane a highly valuable material. This way the egg processors could avoid the cost of waste disposal, moreover they can make extra profit by selling their side product. The main goal of the project was to develop a method for the industrial-scale separation of avian eggshell and its membrane. This core process is followed by a post-processing (e.g. drying, freezing, etc.) and packaging mechanism to make the way-to-market easy. The market ready product will provide an easy solution to the waste problem of egg processors and putting to the market a valuable raw material for the industry.


Technology, industry related objectives[edit]

Use of egg processors at industrial-scale is likely to further increase with rising consumption of eggs in bakeries, confectionery products, sauces, pastas and non-food products. The SHELLBRANE system would enable industrial eggshell waste to be profitably processed and sold to such commercial users. Recycling of eggshell waste will help small- and medium-sized enterprises make more profit from waste while avoiding disposal costs, thereby creating more jobs and increasing their competitiveness.

The Consortium has developed a prototype able to process 100 kg/h of eggshell waste, producing both, membrane and mineral shell, with a high degree of quality. The system and prototype consists basically in 3 steps accomplished by 2 modules:

Separation module Consists in a mechanical comminution step, followed by a density based system that separates mineral from membrane.

Disinfection module for membrane The disinfection step is a novel conception in use for a non aggressive sanitizing technology. This technology, that doesn’t use temperature to destroy microorganism, preserves the quality of the main components found in the membrane.

Drying module In the case of membrane processing, the drying is assembled jointly with the disinfection module, and uses cold air instead of heating. In the case of the shells, where no sensible components are found, the system can use any heating system existing in the market.


''The SHELLBRANE project is co-funded by the European Commission through the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) through the funding scheme "Research for the Benefit of SME-s" under Grant Agreement No.286910."

Partners[edit]

ATEKNEA - ATEKNEA Solutions Hungary Limited Liability Company

ECOMOTIVE - Ecomotive Élelmiszeripari, Kereskedelmi és Szolgáltató Kft.

FRISIAN - Frisian Egg B.V.

IMPULS - Impuls

OSV - Organizzazione Sviluppo Vendite s.r.l

ARD - Ardoran Oü

BDN - BDN Ingeniería de Alimentación SL

LABOR - LABOR S.R.L.

References[edit]

http://shellbrane.eu

http://cordis.europa.eu/home_en.html

http://ec.europa.eu/research/sme-techweb/index_en.cfm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eggshell_and_protein_membrane_separation