Knowledge Based Bio-Economy


Novel processing approaches for the development of food products low in fat, salt and sugar (Food processing)

Project acronym: PLeASURe

Title of project: Novel processing approaches for the development of food products low in fat, salt and sugar

Research area: Food Processing

Contract No: 289536

EU contribution: €2 983 864

Start date: January 2012

Duration: 36 months

Status: on-going

More than 60% of all reported diseases in modern industrial countries are said to have their origins in poor diet: low vitamin intake, high-calorie food (fat and sugar), and high salt consumption. And as society changes, patterns of food intake are also changing dramatically. While ever-fewer people actually prepare their meals at home, the growth in TV cooking programmes suggests the opposite (a European paradox). There is in fact a significant trend towards processed and convenience foods, such as ready-meals for home consumption. This trend poses new challenges for the food industry as these products have to meet high quality and safety standards at low price.

Fat, salt and sugar play important roles both in food manufacturing as well as in human metabolism. Yet, excessive consumption can lead to health problems and, more widely, to exploding costs for healthcare systems. The use of substitutes to reduce salt (NaCl), sugar (sucrose, glucose, and fructose) and fat (saturated and trans-fatty acids) content has proved very attractive for the food industry. It is an approach with low investment costs (no equipment needed) and low ingredient costs. However, such approaches are meeting consumer resistance due to perceptions of changing taste in the final products.

PLEASURE is the first European research project addressing the challenges in producing food that is low in fat, salt and sugar from the processing side. The project is identifying and developing novel processes and processing technologies which; on the one hand reduce unwanted fat, salt and sugar (mono- and disaccharides), and, on the other hand, avoid or at least reduce the use of substitutes, like sweeteners. The aim is an optimised sensorial perception of the sugars, salts and fats present in the final products. New micro-structured and naturally-reduced foods, with similar sensory properties compared to conventional products, are the key to consumer acceptance and success.

PLEASURE will have a major impact on the future development and manufacture of traditional and processed food in European countries. The project is addressing bakery, cheese, meat and vegetable/fruit sauce products; which are among the major contributors to high salt, fat and sugar intakes in Europe. The project outcomes will include optimised strategies for salt, sugar and lipids reduction, in particular for ready-to-eat meals using pizza ingredients as a demonstrator. A low-fat, low-sugar and low-salt pizza will be the ambassador for the project as pizza is among the most-consumed, cooked meals worldwide.

Website of project:

Coordinator: Matthias Kueck,

Organisation: BIOZOON GmbH, Germany,


  • Centrul Transilvan pentru Inovatii si Tehnologii (TRITECC SRL), Romania,
  • European Food Information Resource AISBL, Belgium,
  • RLabs Ltd (RLabs Erevnes Agoras Eteria Periorismenis Eftinis), Greece
  • Promatec Food Ventures BV, the Netherlands,
  • VMI SA, France,
  • University College Cork – National University of Ireland, Cork, Ireland,
  • PLC Ingredients Ltd, Ireland
  • Alsacienne De Pates Menageres SAS, France,
  • Productos Naturales de la Vega sl, Spain          
  • Sleegers Quality Meat Products B.V., the Netherlands,
  • Deutsches Institut für Lebensmitteltechnik e. V., Germany,
  • Hochschule Weihenstephan-Triesdorf, Germany,
  • L'école nationale vétérinaire, agroalimentaire et de l'alimentation, Nantes-Atlantique (ONIRIS), France,
  • Fundacion Azti/Azti Fundazioa, Spain,
  • Teagasc – the Agriculture and Food Development Authority, Ireland,