European Bakery Innovation Centre

  • Acrylamide
  • EBIC research
  • Fatty acids
  • Fibres
  • Gluten Free
  • Proteins
  • Raw materials
  • (Reprocessing) breadwaste
  • Salt reduction
  • Sustainable palm oil
  • Sourdough

(Reprocessing) breadwaste

Less bread waste by working together

Working together and sharing knowledge with internal and external partners raises the level of the bakery chain. 'That's in our company's genes and is the key to growth,' says Dr. Ir. Peter Weegels, Director at EBIC (European Bakery Innovation Centre). Together with the Alliantie Verduurzaming Voedsel (Food Sustainability Alliance) and Wageningen Food & Biobased Research, the EBIC aims to drive down bread wastage by processing remnants.

EBIC is geared to suppliers of raw materials, machine manu­facturers, bakeries, retailers and consumers, both domestic and international. 'Entrepreneurs can come here to gain knowledge or to share in the area of bakery technology and application. As well as organising workshops and seminars, we conduct customer-oriented research,' says Weegels, who is an expert in the area of enzymes technology.

Endless Bread

EBIC and various parties focus intensively on bread waste in the food chain. Tens of thousands of tons of bread goes to waste each year owing to production losses at the bakery and bread that comes back from supermarkets, Weegels: 'Almost 25% of the bread in the chain from production to consumer is lost. Much of this is used as animal feed, but that is a loss in sustainability. We originally started working together with the Alliantie Verduur­zaming Voedsel and Wageningen University & Research on the Endless Bread project; we are now working to drive down bread wastage. We do this by further processing remnants in bakery food.'

New products

We investigated whether it's possible to make new products from unsold bread. Joost Snels, Senior Researcher Supply Chain Management at Wageningen Food & Biobased Research, names three possibilities: 'By mixing milk with old bread, you get bread pudding. Homogenising results in a product that will keep for two weeks and becomes attractive to a supermarket. Moreover, we can make sugars from bread through enzyme conversion. Those can be used as a sugar source in other bakery products, such as piping dough for short biscuits. Old bread can also be processed into gingerbread. It is ground and then added to the dough.'

Code of Conduct MVO

NEBAFA (the Association of Dutch Manufacturers of Bakery Raw Materials) has established a code of conduct regarding sustainability at the Dutch bakery raw materials industry. The code of conduct helps companies give structure to their corporate social responsibility. NEBAFA selected seven themes: food safety, health, labour, energy, packaging, raw materials and water.


Parties who need extra facilities or knowledge can approach EBIC. Weegels gives a few examples: ‘A manufacturer had developed a product with a new variety of fibre and sought possibilities in the bakery world. A consultant had a product idea and allowed EBIC to develop it. And for another party we compared different natural raw materials for puff pastry in their applicability and return.’ Malnutrition is currently a problem in Netherlands, especially in nursing homes and hospitals. Weegels: ‘With several partners like Wageningen University, Gelderse Vallei Hospital and food suppliers, we are investigating how to improve existing food products, and are developing new and enriched food products. This has been investigated in a large, national project entitled Cater with Care.’


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