Project wrap-ups showcase innovative results of collaborative partnerships


As Protein Industries Canada reaches the next phase in its funding cycle, the majority of its project partners are also reaching a significant milestone: a wrapping up of their initial projects, in preparation for new collaboration opportunities.

So far, Protein Industries Canada and its partners have concluded four of their more than 50 collaborative technology and capacity building projects. The rest are expected to reach their final milestones over the coming months, up until the end of March 2023.

These final milestones include everything from putting new food products on shelves to the creation of new intellectual property, which is being protected and commercialized not just in Canada, but also in international markets.

“I’m excited for people to see products in stores. That’s something the average Canadian can really relate to, to see a Lumi cheese or something like that,” Protein Industries Canada Director of Project Operations Cynthia Callahan said. “It’s really cool to see innovative products that are available to eat today.”

Seeing some projects end sooner than others has been beneficial for Protein Industries Canada’s project team. By being able to focus on one completion at a time, the team has been able to learn how best to treat the close-out of projects, as well as fine-tune a process that helps determine the full scale of project outcomes and where the partners may go next in a quick, timely manner.

The successful perfection of the team’s wrap-up process has set the them on a positive track for the next nearly-50 projects. All have seen positive outcomes thus far, with their full potential yet to be seen.

“The close-out process gives us our best glimpse into the ecosystem benefits of our technology projects,” Protein Industries Canada Chief Technology Officer Meghan Gervais said. “We look at jobs and we look at the economic pieces of it, but we also look at things like EDI factors in our close-out process. So, employment of under-represented groups, and we ask about the environmental benefits.”

As the projects wrap up, many partners are already looking toward a continued future together and with Protein Industries Canada. More than one project—completed and in-progress alike—has led into the establishment of a second that builds on the success of the first. This trend is expected to continue as Protein Industries Canada reaches the end of it’s first tranche of funding, with several current project partners expressing an interest in further collaboration.

The projects team is happy to help these interests come to fruition.

“[Three of the] projects that have closed have led into second projects,” Gervais said. “Not all of the same partners, but all of the leads came back with additional project work and led to them bringing other companies in as new partners … the outcomes they had from their first projects ground-truthed the work that they were doing, to the extent that it made sense to have a follow-on investment.”

To keep up to date on the results of Protein Industries Canada’s projects as they wrap up, or for upcoming details about the organization’s second round of programming, be sure to watch their News page at https://www.proteinindustriescanada.ca/news.