Bio-functional Food Engineering (BFE) Facility
The Bio-functional Food Engineering facility (BFE) is a state-of-the-art facility for food technologists to process and stabilise ingredients for use in nutritional beverages including infant formula. It provides key research infrastructure to support the Teagasc Food Research Programme and collaborations with industry and is a centre of excellence for nutritional beverage research, including infant formula.
The BFE facility, funded through the FIRM Strategic Equipment Fund 2006, is a state-of-the-art facility for food technologists to process and stabilise ingredients for use in nutritional beverages, including infant formula.
Designed to fast track the transfer of ideas from the laboratory to pilot plant, the range of unit operations offered by BFE cover areas such as:
- thermal processing
Benefits to Industry
The BFE facility provides a ‘one stop facility’ for dairy based beverage applications. It has unique fully integrated research pilot scale fermenters/reactors and processing capabilities with easy access to scale-up equipment at Moorepark Technology Ltd. (MTL). The equipment has been carefully matched to allow transfer of product from one bench scale process to the next, providing a highly flexible processing environment where the goal is high throughput of experiments with complex design.
The BFE provides a technological platform for use by industry at the near market stage. Ultimately, it is expected that the facility will make a key contribution to the development of foods and beverages containing bio-active ingredients with proven stability and shelf-life.
- Multi-stage spray dryer with fluidising capabilities capable of drying milk derived components.
- Multifunctional membrane filtration plant suitable for separating milk and ingredients.
- Supercritical fluid extraction.
- Adsorber chromatography unit.
- Continuous decanter centrifuge for concentration and purification of bioactive substances post-fermentation, precipitation and hydrolysis of dairy and plant materials.
- Concentric nozzle encapsulator for micro- encapsulation of bio-active components 10- 1000μm.
- Microthermics heat exchanger & in-line homogeniser