Partnership with University of Granada comes after initial research into the effectiveness of bioactive compounds of fruit residues in medical and non-medical uses yields promising results

Fresh Del Monte Produce and the University of Granada in Spain have announced an extended partnership that will look into how bioactive compounds from residues of different fruits can be used for medical and non-medical applications ”in the spirit of promoting health and well-being”.

Del Monte logo computer screen

According to a statement, the partnership comes after more than a year of initial research that looked into the effectiveness of bioactive compounds from certain fruits within Fresh Del Monte’s portfolio yielded promising results.

“As one of the world’s largest producers of fruits, we see tremendous untapped potential within the produce we grow, including their residues,” said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, Del Monte chairman and CEO.

“We are pleased to partner with the University of Granada, true experts in scientific research, and believe that this expanded partnership has the potential to realise breakthroughs in several key areas that we hope will ultimately improve many lives.”

University of Granada research groups led by professors Juan Antonio Marchal and Vito Verardo have developed a methodology for the extraction of bioactive compounds from fruit residue, based on emerging technologies, for medical and non-medical applications.

The partnership will research highly prevalent diseases, dermo-cosmetics, and nutraceuticals and foods.

Dermo-cosmetics include products that have both dermatological and therapeutic effects and are intended to have a beneficial effect on skin health, and beauty.

Nutraceuticals encompass a wide range of health-boosting substances, including vitamins and minerals, herbs, and antioxidants, all sourced from foods or food components.

“This collaboration with Fresh Del Monte is of great importance for biomedical research, as it will allow us to obtain bioactive compounds from residues of different fruits for the treatment of highly prevalent diseases, as well as nutraceuticals to prevent the appearance of these diseases, which we believe can have a great impact on the health of the population,” said University of Granada professor Juan Antonio Marchal.

By joining forces, Fresh Del Monte and the university’s Research Transfer Office are aiming to enhance ongoing research and development initiatives focused on utilising fruit residue to create valuable products that promote healthy lifestyles.

Together, they are seeking to minimise the buildup of residual products, champion sustainable practices across diverse industries, and lessen environmental footprints.

The ongoing partnership is scheduled to span 18 months, with key milestones delineated at various stages of the programme.

“This collaboration with a company like Fresh Del Monte highlights how the concept of circular economy is deeply rooted in the food industry,” added University of Granada professor Vito Verardo.

”The enormous interest of Fresh Del Monte in the revalorisation of food byproducts is evidence of this sensitivity to the environment and could open new possibilities in the use of food byproducts as new raw material.”