Knowledge Based Bio-Economy


Integrating technical development in the food industries (Food Processing)

Project Acronym: HIGHTECH EUROPE

Title of project: European network for integrating novel technologies for food processing

Research area: Food Processing

Contract No: FP7-222824

EU Contribution: 5,870,000 KEuro

Start date: May 2009

Duration: 56 Months

Status: Ongoing

HighTech_Europe is the first European food processing Network of Excellence funded by the European Commission’s Seventh Framework Programme. The 22 project partners, drawn from science and industry in Europe and Australia, have committed themselves to achieve effective knowledge exchange about the most advanced technologies for foodstuffs and food markets.

The aim of the HighTech_Europe is to strengthen the competitiveness of the European food industry, and especially of SMEs. To achieve this, the project has met several objectives.

The Science Cube Approach was used, which combines the sources of innovation, such as nanotech or biotech; the principles of innovation, such as chemical or physical; and the selected process’ type of operation, such as packaging or processing in the food chain. This approach supports the rapid transfer of innovative technologies from the lab into companies – helping disseminate the benefits of food-chain technology innovations more quickly.

The project has also set up a Food Tech Innovation Portal to support the durable integration of European R&D in food processing – a step on the way to a European Food Processing Institute. The portal, launched in May 2013, acts as a knowledge platform to support and drive innovation in the sector, overcoming earlier obstacles in the technology transfer chain and building much closer linkages between universities, research institutes, industrial associations and industry.

In addition to a series of Innovation and Technology Transfer Workshops held across Europe, the project has also launched the European Food Processing Implementation Award, honouring successful innovations in food processing and the improvement of food quality along a knowledge transfer chain. The award serves as an incentive for cooperation between the research and food industries.

The HighTech_Europe project has laid the foundations for a sustainable network of research and development in food processing. Achieving more effective knowledge exchange in this field will boost competitiveness and a culture of innovation in the European food industry, especially within SMEs.

Visit the Food Tech Innovation Portal:

Website of project:

Coordinator: Volker Heinz,,

Organisation: Deutsches Institut für Lebensmitteltechnik Deutschland,