Upcycling means reusing discarded materials, waste, and creating products of higher quality or value than the original. This is the core mission of RISE Products, a food-tech startup located in Brooklyn which collects the spent grains from local breweries and converts them into high protein, high fiber flour.
Spent grains are malted barley that had been crushed and boiled in the beer making process. Despite their high nutritional value, spent grains are discarded after use, usually ending up in landfills. In New York, there are about 30 craft breweries producing a total daily average of 183 barrels of beer. The amount of grain used and discarded in this process is about 18,300 lb. and it happens every day. By giving a second life to this material, RISE helps to transform this spent grain into 4,575 lb. of flour.
With 12x fiber, 2x protein and 1/3 the carbs than regular flour, SUPER flour challenges what is thought of as waste material and presents a solution for reducing food loss and food waste within our complex food production system. At the same time, SUPER flour opens dialogues for brewers to tell their customers about their efforts to curtail waste in their operations and support more sustainable practices.
Pasteurization Dehydrated grain
For chefs and bakers, the use of SUPER flour is an inspiration for working with new ingredients highlighting the need for different diets that utilise local, good quality ingredients that are produced sustainably. At the end, RISE’s overarching intent is to reach consumers and invite them to explore other means in which food can arrive at our tables.
Knowing that our food choices are responsible for about a third of man-made greenhouse emissions, we need to take part in these conversations. RISE tackles global challenges of hunger, malnutrition, desertification, land degradation, biodiversity loss, and excessive consumption and production patterns; our actions contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
An upclyced ingredient is an invitation for re-thinking “waste” as a bountiful source. It does not solve the inefficiencies along our foods’ supply chain but brings transparency; it takes full advantage of our resources and bring us closer to achieve circular economies.