Knowledge Based Bio-Economy


Sustainable exploitation of bioactive components from the Black Sea area traditional foods (Nutrition)

Project acronym: BaSeFood

Title of project: Sustainable exploitation of bioactive components from the Black Sea area traditional foods

Research area: Nutrition

Contract No: 227118

EU contribution: €2 906 233

Start date: April 2009

Duration: 43 months


BaSeFood aims to promote sustainable development and exploitation of traditional foods, and related emerging bioactive compounds with putative health effects in the Black Sea Region.

The project is intended to help establish a rationale for integrating the concepts of health-promoting foods and traditional foods. This will create a knowledge base for a sustainable economic development in the production and processing of tradition-based healthy foods. Specifically, the BaSeFood project will produce reports on selected traditional foods, which may contribute to proprietary claims at a national or European level, or health and nutritional claims.  Additional documentation and reports, based on selected case studies  on a larger number of foods will describe current knowledge (main raw materials, other ingredients, ways of preparation, role in local food systems), which may enhance consumers knowledge and stimulate the interest of stakeholders.

The team will produce analytical data on the overall nutritional and characteristic bioactive content of selected foods, and compare it with the results available in food composition databases, with special reference to EuroFIR-BASIS. Key micro-organisms, with a particular focus on food safety and food quality aspects will be also investigated. Experimental data will be gathered from in vitro, in vivo and clinical trials, which may be used for health claim substantiation.  Specific experiments will be aimed at the determination of retention factors of bioactive components in selected raw materials, following specific unit operations. The traditional flow charts of specific traditional foods will be analysed, in the perspective of their updating.

The project will also cover the attitude of various categories of consumers towards Black Sea area traditional foods and will involve a range of stakeholders, particularly SMEs and local interest groups.

Finally, the project team plans to establish interaction with running initiatives about plant food biodiversity characterisation in relation to food differentiation and food security.

Expected impacts

The team has high expectations in terms of impact at different levels. The project will contribute to the knowledge on the effect bioactive compounds on human health. The food list from integrated records and on site explorations, will be a meaningful record of traditional foods in the area, also in a perspective of intercultural comparison, and may be useful in a number of contexts, included the identification and valorisation of plant and food diversity.

Overall, the project will make a contribution to the substantiation of nutrition/health claims relating to traditional foods, promote sustainable economic development for European SMEs and the Black Sea region, and enhance cooperation between researchers and stakeholders.

Expected results

From an operative point of view, BaSeFood will contribute to the scientific study of bioactives within Black Sea area traditional foods through rigorous analytical and biological assays. The project will help to unify methodologies and data acquisition, while at the same time bearing in mind the diverse characteristics of traditional foods as well as consumer issues. It will put bioactive substances and related health claims in a favourable, consumer-friendly context.

The traditional foods already identified by the project are very unique and diverse; some of them may have a potential for development into commercial products also outside the study area.

Website of project:
Coordinator: L. Filippo D'Antuono, 
Organisation: UNIBO– Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna, Polo Scientifico-didattico di Cesena, Italy,;