Team including University of Helsinki students develops plant-based chocolate mousse, wins FOODIO project prize

The FOODIO project rewarded the best healthy dairy product based on plant-based side streams from the food industry. The winner, a kind of chocolate mousse, offers a delicious, sustainable plant-based dessert option for health and environmentally conscious consumers, including vegans.

The FOODIO mentoring programme has been undertaken throughout 2018. It involved 40 undergraduate, master and doctoral students from four European universities. The participants had organised their projects in four working groups to solve a challenge: to develop new healthy tasty dairy products using the fibre obtained from plant-based side streams from the olive oil and fruit juice industry.

The groups presented their products in the final gala in Madrid on 12 December. The jury assessed the products' value from the point of view of innovation, the ability to transform an idea into a truly new food product and to have an impact on sustainability, society and the economy.

The winning product was Vousse, a kind of chocolate mousse that offers a delicious, sustainable plant-based dessert for health and environmental conscious consumers. Vousse is also suitable for vegans. Its health-related aspects are emphasised through the nutritional claims of “source of fibre” and “reduced sugar”.

The winning product was developed by Fispa Foods, a startup project of ten students, from three universities in Finland, Israel, and Spain: Sharon Abderhalden, Mohamad Azizkhani, Mamata Bhattarai, Pia Silventoinen, and Laura Toppinen from the University of Helsinki, Valeria Belochvostov, Lital Cohen, and Michael Faivush from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology,  and Beatriz Fernandez and Maite Iriondo from Autonomous University of Madrid, Spain.

Fispa Food won a prize worth 2,000 euros donated by project partner Valio. Other contestants were a healthy cooking sauce Unisauce, a crispy and healthy snacking alternative Crispilicious and an innovative sustainable grilled cheese Cheezy Roll.


About FOODIO, Food Solutions Master Class

The FOODIO program, Food Solutions Master Class, is a European educational project aligned with the strategy of the pan-European consortium EIT Food, to provide healthy and sustainable food for consumers.

The objective is directly linked to the strategy of EIT Food to connect education and innovation in Europe, to adress consumer needs and specific problems in the food sector

The FOODIO educational program, through a European network of academic and industrial tutors, has mentored 40 European students for one year to solve real-life challenges. FOODIO has selected multidisciplinary profiles to become future professionals in the food sector, acquiring competences in product formulation, new technologies, marketing, business creation and relevant aspects related to the consumers.

This programme has given participants a co-creation and international learning experience embebed in a competitive context.