Welcome to the Plant Protein Innovation Center, an interdisciplinary research center dedicated to studying plant and alternative proteins.
We are proud to announce Conagra as a partner of the Plant Protein Innovation Center (PPIC)! Conagra joins the ranks of Cargill, The Hershey Company, and ADM in partnering with the PPIC and building the foundation for collaborative, innovative research within the plant proteins space. Our members are invaluable to the success of the Center.
We are striving to be first. The plant protein innovation center (PPIC) will be the first center of its kind in the nation for plant and other alternative proteins. The PPIC will bring together interdisciplinary researchers and industry partners to produce and study nutritious and functional plant protein ingredients for food applications. The PPIC will address industry-identified plant-protein challenges and opportunities to develop a wealth of interdisciplinary research that will bring to the supply chain new nutritious and functional plant protein ingredients and products, working all the way from breeding and genetics to processing, formulation, and marketing.
Coming Together to Grow Research
While there has been some research done on novel proteins, the information is far from being comprehensive and is done in isolation. Some scientists are researching the nutritional quality of peas, others are breeding new dry beans varieties, while others are investigating processing methods for canola. By combining individual efforts and ideas, we can do more and reach attainable goals faster. The PPIC will invite scientists both internal and external to the University of Minnesota to be part of a research cohort. Collaboration will empower plant-based protein research by allowing scientists to come together to think beyond their area of focus. Working together will facilitate cross-lab use of high-end instrumentation that can uncover more information than ever before, and will open up larger grant opportunities. Partnering with industry is essential. The PPIC requires the support of key industry players, who are driven to work together towards a better future. Industry partners, will be protein suppliers, producers, and users, but all having common interests. In addition to individual researchers coming together with industry, partnership with international entities such as the Canadian Consulate and their associated Protein Highway Initiative, other research institutions/centers, commodity groups, entrepreneurs, and government agencies are imperative to the mission and success of the Center. These partnerships will ultimately provide research diversity and unique perspectives that lead to innovative solutions to real-world problems.