Fully optimising Aotearoa New Zealand’s seafood resources means extracting every molecule and maximising the potential for high value products for human and animal health.
Aotearoa New Zealand’s aquaculture and fisheries offers molecules with special properties that make them commercially valuable, such as in lowering blood pressure or in anti-aging peptides.
These molecules are often found in by-products. This provides the opportunity for the kaimoana / seafood industry to achieve growth targets without affecting seafood availability or increasing catches.
Molecules in fish include a range from big structural proteins for biomedical scaffolds, through to anti-inflammatory omega-3s, and blood pressure-lowering or anti-aging peptides.
The challenge is how to extract the molecules from a diverse range of marine organisms containing different types and combinations of the molecules. Current technology can’t do this. The world needs new technology that is economical, uses environmentally friendly processes with low emissions and most importantly, doesn’t destroy one component while recovering another.
Plant & Food Research is leading this project. It brings together world-leading scientists, technologists and engineers from Plant & Food Research, Callaghan Innovation, the Universities of Otago and Victoria in Aotearoa New Zealand, and scientists in Australia and Norway. This research is funded by Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE) Endeavour Fund.
The project is proposing a process called Cyber Physical Seafood Systems (Cyber-Marine) using innovative and intelligent industry technology platforms. AI-integrated sensor systems will assess what’s in a raw material and use that information to direct optimised processing.