Valorizing outlets

Without a profitable outlet, there is no crop. Terres Inovia is working with its partners and actors from the sector to valorize, and above all diversify, the outlets for these crops, in nutrition and other domains. The work of the institute covers the entire production chain, with the development of recommendations concerning processes and key steps in transformation.

Contact : Alain Quinsac

Our goals

To validate the data from surveillance plans

To understand how contaminants are transferred and develop recommendations to prevent contamination

To improve crushing through work on the key steps in this process (the removal of oil from rapeseed, the hulling of sunflower seeds and the cooking of soybeans)

To monitor the development of new processes

To provide expert advice concerning initial transformation processes for local sectors, in the framework of crop diversification.

Our main actions

Surveys of seed and cake quality

The work carried out by Terres Inovia, in partnership with Terres Univia, collects data every year from the main laboratories that carry out analytical checks on the seeds to determine the quality of the harvest. The results are presented in the form of sheets intended for stakeholders in the oilseed sector.

Annual national surveys have also been carried out since 2003 to assess the nutritional quality of rapeseed and sunflower meal from French crushing plants. Each year, the results representing around ten samples per plant are summarized in files giving the main characteristics of rapeseed and sunflower cake. These surveys on oilcakes contribute to the development of the value of oilcakes in animal feed by better understanding the variability of their composition and their nutritional value. Since 2019, this survey on meal produced in France also includes soybean meal expeller and rapeseed meal expeller (fatty meal resulting from mechanical processes, without solvent).


Evaluation of ecoextraction technologies for the crushing of rapeseed

Over the last few years, Terres Inovia has been engaged in an environmental approach aiming to decrease energy consumption and solvent (hexane) use in the crushing process for rapeseed. The institute has been involved in work to optimize the current extraction process through the use of intensification technologies (ultrasound, microwaves) or the use of agrosolvents in place of hexane.


One study performed by Terres Inovia in association with Olead, Saipol and the GREEN (the group for research into the ecoextraction of natural products) laboratory of the University of Avignon and the Vaucluse focused on the extraction of rapeseed oil from the presscake, and achieved decreases in the amount of solvent used and the extraction time, accompanied by an increase in yield.

A European R&D action towards the sustainability of monogastric farms

To meet the new challenges of protein autonomy and reduced environmental impact, monogastric animal breeding (poultry, pigs) must develop new feed resources, innovate in technologies and select robust animals capable of better adapting to these constraints. This was the ambition of the Feed-a-Gene project coordinated by INRAE, funded under the European research and innovation program Horizon 2020, which brought together 23 partners from 2015 to 2020.

Terres Inovia has made an important contribution by proposing Expeller soybean meal produced in France (Soja de France) as a new food resource, within territorial channels. Indeed, the method of agricultural production, processing and the quality of these products for livestock are carriers of economic, environmental and societal value.

Four batches of soybean meal (several hundred kg) were prepared in the Pessac pilot plant using several process conditions (cooking-pressing and extrusion-pressing). They were evaluated for feeding broilers in the UK and piglets in Hungary. The results confirmed the nutritional value of Expeller cakes and the importance of their cooking conditions.  
In addition, Terres Inovia contributed to life cycle analyses of the production and use of these raw materials, from field to plate.

European Expeller soybean meal has shown its value: the environmental impact of animal products is globally reduced by substituting Brazilian soybean meal with European Expeller soybean meal in monogastric feeds (reduction of the impact of climate change by 8%, 26% and 25% on pork, broiler and eggs, even if there is an increase in the area occupied).


Plan for the surveillance of oil crops (PSO)

The Oilseed and Protein Seed Monitoring Plan (PSO) is a service for monitoring the health quality of oilseeds and protein crops, offered to all operators in the sector, in an inter-professional framework (with oversight by Terres Inovia, Iterg and Terres Univia).

This involves pooling the contaminant analysis data carried out by the companies themselves. It is intended for storage organizations and processors. It concerns oilseeds (rapeseed, sunflower, soybeans), protein crops and dry legumes (peas, field beans, lentils, etc.), in all their forms (seeds, cakes, crude and refined oils, refining co-products) and for the main chemical contaminants and biological (residues of plant protection products, heavy metals, mycotoxins, salmonella, toxic botanical impurities, organic toxic substances, etc.).

A web portal has been developed in partnership with Hypérion, with the support of FranceAgriMer. Operational since the 2016 campaign, it allows online data entry and consultation of overall results

To date, 35 companies (agricultural cooperatives and traders, oil mill industries, animal feed manufacturers) are participating by examining all the potential dangers of oilseeds, protein crops and pulses. The PSO contributes to the knowledge of contaminants that pose problems or, on the contrary, are well controlled throughout the chain. The plan is also a place for discussion between the links in the sector on the theme of health security. The acquisition of data in a shared database is also very useful in helping to set realistic regulatory thresholds.

The reliability of analytical data was investigated in 2019, carried out among all laboratories that provide data to partners. It involved knowing more precisely their detection limits on a panel of seven priority pesticides and their accreditations for these molecules on oilseed and protein products (seeds and processing products).


Territorial production chains for soybeans

The development of territorial soybean production chains in the South-West or in Burgundy, in recent years, is an example of an effort integrating producers, collectors, crushers, breeders and distributors.

The objective is to achieve crop diversification with positive environmental impacts, an innovative crushing model allowing autonomous production of protein sources for livestock, and high quality animal products that are easier to control and guarantee to the consumer.

Commissioned in 2017, the Sojalim plant located in Vic-en-Bigorre, in the South-West of France, crushes soybeans produced in the region and offers livestock farmers a "French Soy" meal, rich in proteins and energy, whose nutritional and environmental qualities can meet the new environmental and societal challenges.