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The open session of the WG4 annual meeting of the PIMENTO project entitled “Federating scientists and Fermented Food producers to boost innovation for society” was held in Milan on 26 September.

Mediterranea Biotecnologie (MeB), COST - European Cooperation in Science and Technology partner for the Pimento project, participated in the event with a presentation by Dr. Roberto Gagliardi, Sole Director of Mediterranea Biotecnologie, who argued about the studies and processes applied by MeB to bottlenecks encountered during the product activities developed with SME clients, concerning starter cultures, probiotics and bio-protection.

In this regard, during the meeting, the drafting of a useful questionnaire was defined to mark out the main 'bottlenecks' encountered by companies when applying innovations to their new fermented foods. The survey will aim to track these bottlenecks, and identify possible solutions to overcome them. The survey, which will be administered to the companies, will delve into the aspects related to the skills gained in product innovation, the difficulties encountered in the industrial, regulatory, health and scientific-technological fields. The results of the survey will be segmented considering the companies commercial orientations, the reference markets and the different profiles of the "Perfect Fermented Food Innovators".

During the meeting, Roberto Gagliardi emphasised the importance of knowing the skills of the main drivers of innovation, the need for support from institutional research, and the need to set up qualified research hubs, dedicated to SMEs, where innovation know-how could converge.