From food waste to food gain

In an ideal world, there is no waste: we simply use all residual material to create new products. We are happy to contribute to such a circular economy system. We are looking into innovative ways to convert unsold food into new foods.

VIDEO: Three residue flows, three universities, three newly composed products!

Tasty, nutritious and renewable

First, we mapped out our main residual food flows: potatoes, bananas and bread we can no longer sell but are safe to consume. We asked students from 3 universities to use them for new product prototypes. With the slogan ‘Tasty, nutritious and renewable’ they created cereals, a snack bar and a stuffed mash ball. After intensive tasting tests and an appreciation by an international jury, we will decide whether we will actually produce and sell these products.

In search of maximum added value

The students’ search for new products fits in with the international Circular Food Generator Track* project. We helped set it up to use as much food rests as possible to create new products fit for human consumption. We prefer this option rather than process it to animal feed, use it in biochemistry, for anaerobic digestion, etc. That is why our stores directly donate many food products to social organisations every day.

We gather unsold bread separately
We set to work with our biggest residue flows, unsold bread for instance.
VIDEO: Within EIT Food, we work with more than 50 prominent partners on innovating the food chain and making it more sustainable.

European co-operation

Circular Food Generator Track is a project set up from the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) Food, Colruyt Group is part of. The consortium groups more than 50 prominent partners from 13 countries with businesses, universities and research centres. Together we are working on innovating the food chain and making it more sustainable. Our group invests approx. three million euros in EIT Food and contributes to four projects, such as Circular Food Generator Track.

*Initiative supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). This European Union body receives support from Horizon 2020, the EU framework programme for research and innovation. EIT is not liable for the use of this information.


With this initiative, we contribute to the following Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

Zero hunger Responsible consumption & production