In this sector I.D.Tech has developed highly innovative technologies in the field of functional products by means of biofortification during growth with aqueous-based solutions for foliar sprays as well as biological or technological treatments for better maintaining the quality of food that is naturally enriched in micronutrients, while however respecting nature.
In particular, the research and development in this area focuses on functional foods containing phytochemical ingredients that can prevent the onset of serious and perhaps chronic diseases and the post-harvest treatment of plant products for preserving said ingredients, according to an approach supported also by the United Nations through the FAO (i.e. Food & Agriculture Organization) and the WHO (i.e. World Health Organization) and also confirmed by the “Rome Declaration on Nutrition 19-21 November 2014.”
In particular, Prof. Pifferi, R&D Director at I.D.Tech, has headed the activities aimed at the research and development of various technologies that were later patented, such as those regarding the selenium-enrichment of potatoes and the post-harvest treatment of vegetable produce using iodine as an anti-germinant and/or with natural anti-tumorals of vegetable origin (i.e. phytochemicals).
By following this philosophy, I.D.Tech has recently designed and developed a turnkey agronomic enrichment technology for obtaining functional plant products, such as kiwi and grapes (and their by-products obtained through biological and technological transformation, e.g. juices, wine and vinegar), as well as potatoes, soya and rice (a food with marked nutritional characteristics, which constitutes the basic diet of more than one third of the world’s population – firstly Asia) enriched in two trace minerals, namely selenium and lithium, which resulted in a Italian patent and in the PCT international patent application.