Fava bean is a grain legume which is welladapted to Northern Europe, and is relatively cheap to grow. Two million tonnes are currently produced across the EU-28, particularly in the UK and Northern France. However, it is mainly grown for animal feed, and the crop remains an under-utilised source of dietary protein and fibre in Europe. Furthermore, the crop has shown variability in terms of yield, resulting in a lower attractiveness for farmers.
The Favuleux project aims to promote Fava bean as a high-quality sustainable source of plant-based protein. The project will develop a Fava bean production pipeline, which will include both supply chain modelling and assessment of economic viability.
As part of this, the project will also establish a socioeconomic development and environmental sustainability impact assessment system, which will be of use for emerging Fava beans networks. The specific sustainability assessment framework will include parameters such as farm economic costing, lifecycle approach to sustainability impacts, food miles, energy accounting in product lifecycle, and ecological footprint.
This will help to ensure that Fava bean production is managed in a sustainable manner and highlight its suitability as a viable plant-based protein for the European food market.