According to European Flour Millers, there are about 600 types of flour in Europe. The proportion of wheat bran depends on the type of wheat and the type of flour (white or wholemeal flour). It’s estimated that the theoretical proportion of bran – contained in the gran and available for various uses – is between 15 and 25%.
In 2016, Belgium produced 1,4 million tonnes of wheat, including 906.640 tonnes in Wallonia and 489.224 tonnes in Flanders.
Source : Département de l’Agriculture et de la Pêche, Gouvernement Flamand.
In 2016, France produced more than 29 million tonnes of wheat.
Source : Agreste, Ministère français de l’Agriculture et de l’Alimentation.
Valorisation of wheat bran
Carbohydrates, the bulk of the wheat bran, are currently not used to produce high value-added molecules. They are mainly valued for animal feed.
From the carbohydrates of wheat bran, Valbran aims to produce plant based non-ionic of APG type (alkyl polyglycosides) and sugar esters.
The marketing of plant based molecules as substitutes for oil based molecules raises societal issues. One of the major issues concerns the acceptability of biobased molecules by consumers.
To meet this major challenge, these biobased molecules must respect 4 conditions:
- a lower cost than oil based equivalent ;
- at least equivalent properties to those of oil based equivalent;
- do not compete with food ;
- have minimal environmental impact.