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HealthFerm Summerschool
24 Jun 2024 — 26 Jun 2024
Lyon, FR
Category: Training

From June 24-26, 2024, a HealthFerm Summer School will be hosted by HealthFerm partner and world´s best chefs at Institut Lyfe Research (former Institut Paul Bocuse – IPBR) in Lyon, France.

This Summer School is part of the Training & Capacity building activities and is intended for PhD-students in the HealthFerm project only.

Stay tuned for further updates and news on our website.

HealthFerm at Bridge2Food EUROPE 2024
04 Jun 2024 — 06 Jun 2024
The Hague, The Netherlands
Category: General

From 4-6th of June, 2024, HealthFerm will participate in the Bridge2Food EUROPE 2024 event in The Hague (NL). This event is the largest gathering in the Plant-Based and Alternative Protein industry!

HealthFerm will be attending and hosting a booth! Please have a look at the program on the event website.

Webinar on Consumers and Plant-Based Fermented Foods - Insights from HealthFerm PAN EU Survey
30 May 2024
Category: General

Join us on May 30th, 2 PM CEST for a free webinar sharing the consumer insights on fermented plant-based foods collected in a pan-European survey carried out by our Work Package 4, led by Prof. Armando Perez-Cueto from Umeå University. The webinar is hosted by our partner, Bridge2Food.

In this webinar, we will share the findings from our survey and discuss key topics such as:

  • Attitudes and Trust: How consumers feel about plant-based fermented foods.
  • Consumer Expectations: What people expect from these foods.
  • Willingness to Try: How open people are to try plant-based fermented options.

This is a great opportunity to learn more about the growing interest in plant-based diets and the role of fermentation in enhancing food quality and health benefits.

Interested? Go ahead and register here!


Microbes4SustainableFoods at Food Systems Microbiomes Conference
14 May 2024 — 17 May 2024
Torino, IT
Category: General

HealthFerm will be involved in a special session the the Food Systems Microbiomes Conference in Torino, Italy, taking place from May 14-17, 2024.

The session is organised by Microbes4SustainableFoods - stay tuned for more detailed information!

More information on the event, the program, and how to register can be found on the Food Systems Microbiomes website.

Stakeholder Workshop WP4 - Consumer Behaviour
30 Apr 2024
Category: Stakeholder Board

Our next HealthFerm Stakeholder Board workshop is scheduled on April 30th!

The project conducted a first consumer survey with focus on plant-based fermented foods. The intention of the workshop is to disseminate the findings at EU level, and when necessary, comparing between countries. The main constructs to be discussed are attitudes and trust towards plant-based fermented foods, consumer expectations towards plant-based fermented foods, and willingness to try them; Additionally, we want to discuss with the Stakeholder Board some of the implicati ons these results may have on the field.

HealthFerm session during the International Cereal and Bread Congress
22 Apr 2024 — 25 Apr 2024
Nantes, France
Category: Training

From April 22-25, 2024, the 17th International Cereal and Bread Congress (ICBC) will take place in Nantes,France. During this exciting event, there will be a special HealthFerm session.

Found out more about ICBC here, and stay tuned for upcoming details on the program!

Save the date – FOOD 2030 Networks Conference
05 Mar 2024 — 07 Mar 2024
Brussels, BE
Category: General

Meet HealthFerm on the next FOOD 2030 Networks Conference on Transformative Food System Innovation, taking place in Brussels from March 4-7!

Check out the program and get ready to register by Feb 19, 2024.

Want more information? Found out more on the FOOD 2030 website

Webinar on Health aspects of plant-based fermented foods: A Point of View from the HealthFerm Project
21 Feb 2024
Category: Training

Another HealthFerm webinar happened on February 21, 2024! The webinar focused on the insights from the HealthFerm project related to health aspects of plant-based fermented foods.


  • Prof. Christophe Courtin (KU Leuven, Belgium)
    Presentation title: "Plant-based food fermentations: why do we ferment, how does it change the food and what should future research focus on"
  • Prof. Kristin Verbeke (KU Leuven, Belgium)
    Presentation title: "Expectation on the effects of plant-based fermented foods: potential mechanisms"
  • Prof. Marjukka Kolehmainen (University of Eastern Finland, Finland)
    Presentation title: "Evidence of the health effects of plant based fermented foods"

Moderator: Jan de Vries** (HealthGrain forum), in cooperation with ICC.

==> Recording of the webinar, please click here

FOOD 2030 conference: Green and Resilient Food Systems
04 Dec 2023 — 05 Dec 2023
Brussels, Belgium
Category: General

The FOOD 2030 conference on Green & Resilient Food Systems will take place in Brussels!

This event focuses on transitioning towards sustainable, resilient and inclusive food systems for the benefit of the environment and economy.

Registrations will open mid-September and more information can be found here.


Symposium at the FENS conference - Programme on the nutritional benefits of fermented plant-based foods
17 Nov 2023
Belgrade, Serbia
Category: Training

Technology and health of plant based fermented foods, a point of view from the HealthFerm project

Chair: Jan de Vries (Nutrition Solutions, NL) and Kristin Verbeke (KU Leuven, BE)

Short introduction on the EU HealthFerm project
Christophe Courtin, KU Leuven, BE

Fermentation technology, consequences on food composition and acceptability of foods
Christophe Courtin, KU Leuven, BE

Expectation on the effects of plant based fermented foods: potential mechanisms
Kristin Verbeke, KU Leuven, BE

Evidence of the health effects of plant based fermented foods
Marjukka Kolehmainen, University of Eastern Finland, FIN

Discover the full FENS program here!

Symposium at the EFFoST conference 2023
07 Nov 2023
Valencia, Spain, Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology
Category: Training

Microbes4SustainableFoods: Designing future fermented foods

Foods, made through desired microbial growth and enzymatic conversions of food components have been part of the human diet for millennia. Globally a very broad range of fermented foods exist, both animal and plant based. Fermentation processes have mainly been applied to conserve perishable foods. Potential health benefits of fermented foods have only been considered rather recently. Only very recently, promotion of controled fermentation processes in foods have drawn scientific attention, not only from a nutritional perspective but also from a sustainability perspective. In the Microbes4SustainableFoods sessions, five European projects with overlapping interests in food fermentation processes, collaborated to present a varied program on the design of future fermented foods. In a general introduction presentation on food fermentations, the common state of the art of the different projects will be presented. Afterwards, the setup of HealthFerm, PIMENTO, DOMINO and WHEATBIOME will be discussed, followed by some results of the MASTER project, DOMINO and HealthFerm. Finally, a roundtable discussion with the coordinators of the different projects on a sustainable network in food fermentation technology, how to create synergy between the European projects on Microbes4Sustainable Foods and the critical steps into application of foods that are available to the consumer.

Where? EFFoST conference, Valencia, Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology

When? November 7

Special session 4

10:30 - 11:10: Food fermentations - state of the art l Yamina De Bondt, KU Leuven, BE

11:10 - 11:30: HealthFerm: Innovative pulse and cereal-based diets for human health and sustainable diets l Christophe Courtin, KU Leuven, BE

11:30 - 11:50: PIMENTO project: Promoting Innovation of Fermented Foods l Christophe Chassard, INRAE, Université Clermont Auvergne, FR

11:50 - 12:10: DOMINO project: Harnessing the potential of fermented foods for healthy and sustainable food systems l Stéphane Chaillou, Université Paris-Saclay, INRAE, FR

12:10 - 12:30: WHEATBIOME project: Unravelling the potential of the wheat microbiome for the development of healthier, more sustainable and resilient wheat-derived food & feed products l Rosa Perez-Gregorio, University of Vigo, ES

Special session 6

14:00 - 14:20: ´MASTER´ing Fermented Foods l Paul Cotter, Teagasc Food Research Centre, IR

14:20 - 14:40: DOMINO project: Design of microbial solutions for plant-based fermented food prototypes using synthetic ecology approaches l Abelardo Margolles, IPLA-CSIC, ES

14:40 - 15:00: HealthFerm project: Processing induced changes in starch, fibre and protein in plant-based dairy alternative “gurt” l Kati Katina, Universiry of Helsinki, FIN

15:00 - 16:00: Roundtable discussion l Jan de Vries, HealthGrain Forum, NL

Special session 9

From innovation to product development gaining consumer acceptability – building sustainability in food system

16:30 - 17:00: Cultivating sustainability: The green promise of grass proteins l Kaisu Riihinen, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Espoo, FIN

17:00 - 17:30: Sensory Profiling and Flavor Analysis of Faba Bean Ingredients and Extrudates l Fabio Tucillo, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, FIN

17:30 - 18:00: Advantages and Challenges of Using Pulse Flours in Food Applications: A Focus on Sustainability, Protein Enrichment, and Nutritional Benefits l Kerstin Burseg, GoodMills Innovation GmbH, GE

18:00 - 18:30: Harvesting Sustainability: Exploring the Nexus of Whole Grains and Alternative Proteins for a Greener Future l Peter Shewry, Rothamsted Research, UK

Discover the full program here!

ILSI Europe Annual Symposium 2023
24 Oct 2023
Brussels, BE
Category: General

HealthFerm will be represented during the ILSI Europe Annual Symposium taking place in Brussels, BE, on October 24th 2023! Yamina De Bondt (KU Leuven) will present the HealthFerm project during Session 2 - Beyond Bread and Beer: Unleashing the Power of Fermented Foods.

The presentation will outline the possible mechanisms by which fermentation can increase health-related properties of plant-based foods.

Discover the full program here!

ILSI2023 program

Workshop on omics principles in fermentation technology
04 Sep 2023
Category: Training

This workshop was held in connection to the annual HealthFerm project meeting at ETH Zürich.

12.30 - 13.30 Special IFNH Lunch Seminar

Exploring microbial diversity and health promotion with fermented food- Maria Marco (UC Davis)

14.00 - 17.00 HealthFerm Workshop (only for registered HealthFerm consortium partners)

14.00-15.00: Non-targeted metabolic profiling of sourdough and other fermented foods - Anna Kårlund (University of Turku)

15.00-16.00: High-throughput DNA sequence analysis for microbiome profiling - Nicholas Bokulich (ETH Zürich)

16.00-17.00: Fingerprinting methods for characterizing fermented foods - Laura Nyström (ETH Zürich)

17.00 - 20.00 BBQ and tasting of fermented foods (only for registered HealthFerm consortium partners)

Stakeholder workshop
16 Jun 2023
Category: Stakeholder Board

An inventory of Fermented Plant-Based Food in Europe: what purpose and how to conduct it?

On June 16th, 2023, the first Stakeholder Board workshop took place online in the framework of the HealthFerm work package on consumer behavior.

One of the tasks within the HealthFerm project is to identify the types of fermented plant-based foods that are usually consumed in the EU from traditional to newer or innovative (from bread or sauerkraut to miso or pea tempeh). The aim is not only to list the different food items, but also to get information about their culinary uses, contexts of consumptions and symbolic values. One of the important aspects is related to their association with animal based products, and especially meat. Indeed, some of these products have a great potential for reducing meat consumption, for example through the umamification of dishes.

During the workshop, two breakout rooms were organised on (i) existing inventories and (ii) clarifying the term Novel for plant-based fermented foods.

Looking forward to the next interaction with the HealthFerm Stakeholder Board!

Webinar on nutrition and health, with a focus on gastrointestinal physiology and colonic physiology
15 Jun 2023
Category: Training

This webinar will introduce you to the science of digestive health and fermented cereals and pulses.

Experts: Prof. K. Verbeke (KU Leuven, Belgium), Prof. R. Landberg (Chalmers University, Sweden)

Recording of the webinar: please click here
Presentation from Prof. Verbeke: please click here
Presentation from Prof. Landberg: please click here

HealthGrain Forum workshop
26 Apr 2023 — 27 Apr 2023
Leuven, Belgium
Category: Training

The HealthGrain Forum workshop in April 2023 promises to be an engaging and lively event!

Join us on Wednesday, the 26th of April for a visit at Puratos facilities in Groot-Bijgaarden (starting from 09:00 CEST), an afternoon workshop with presentations on the EU project InnoFoodAfrica results, the HGF General Assembly meeting, and a networking dinner in Brussels.

On Thursday, the 27th of April (9:00-13:00 CEST), a workshop at KU Leuven Arenberg Castle Auditorium will take place in collaboration with the EU research project HealthFerm focusing on the state of the art of fermentation processes in relation to sensory quality, food safety and shelf life.

==> Discover the final programme here!

Further information: please click here

You can also attend this workshop online following this link.

Co-design workshop in Umeå, Sweden
20 Apr 2023
Umeå, Sweden
Category: Community Science

Do you love baking sourdough bread or fermenting at home and want to find out what makes your final products unique? Would you like to contribute to scientific research and learn more about your live bacteria? Would you like to know more about Fermentation in Europe?

Then join our co-design workshop hosted by scientists from Umeå University! We're conducting a study on the microbiome of fermented foods and would like to get input from bakers and fermenters like you to better tailor our research to your interests.

The workshop takes place on 20th April 2023 from 17h-20h.Location: Forskningsrestaurang Institutionen för kost och måltidsveteskap / Department of Food, Nutrition and Culinary Science Lärarutbildningshuset, Plan 3 Umeå Universitet, 901 87, Umeå, SE

You can register for the event through: Please note that the event will take place in Swedish.

Co-design workshop in Helsinki, Finland
14 Apr 2023
Helsinki, Finland
Category: Community Science

Sourdough lovers! Do you want to know why your sourdough is unique? Do you want to know how to make it even better?

Then participate in our research project and discover the secrets of your sourdough starter, together with the scientists from the University of Helsinki during our workshop!

The event takes place at Agnes Sjöberginkatu 2 (EE building) 00790, Helsinki, and is free! Food and drinks are served!

Interested? Click here to find out more and sign up!

Co-design workshop near Leuven, Belgium
30 Mar 2023
Leuven, Belgium
Category: Community Science

Are you living in Belgium, do you enjoy baking sourdough bread and want to discover what makes your bread unique?Would you like to contribute to scientific research while learning more about the science behind sourdough?

Perfect! On the evening of March 30th 2023, scientists of the VUB and KU Leuven, together with Alice down the rabbit hole, will organise a co-design workshop near Leuven, Belgium. The idea of this workshop comes from our wish to align the HealthFerm sourdough microbiome research with the questions and interests that live among home and professional sourdough bakers. Using an interactive format we will sit together with interested sourdough bakers and we will determine how and what we can give back to the people that will later on participate in our sourdough collection campaign.


You can register for the event through: Please note that the event will take place in Dutch.

Co-design workshop in Zürich, Switzerland
16 Mar 2023
Zürich, Switzerland
Category: Community Science

Save the date! For the first co-design workshop, held in German, we invite home bakers to learn about their expectations in participating in and engaging with this project.

If you're interested, please don't hesitate to reach out to us directly through

Webinar on fermentation principles of grains and pulses, state of the art and scientific challenges
24 Feb 2023
Category: Training

Learn more about the state of the art on microbial fermentation technologies that are used to produce foods. The impact of the fermentation processes on food composition and nutritional attributes will be presented in relation to the raw materials used to produce final products. The presentations will cover a selection of microbes, conditions of the fermentation processed in solid, semi solid and liquid products and potential control of the fermentation processes.

Experts: Prof. M. Gobbetti (University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy) and Dr R. Coda (University of Helsinki, Finland)

Recording of the webinar: please click here
Presentation from Dr R. Coda: please click here
Presentation from Prof. Gobetti: please click here

First Stakeholder Board Meeting
20 Jan 2023
Category: Stakeholder Board

Presentation of the HealthFerm project as well as the role of the Stakeholder Board. Discussion about potential synergies