Photo illustration Proléval Valorex Valorial

PROLEVAL is a collaborative research project led by Valorex. Started in 2015, it officially ended in July 2021, after 72 months of work. The aim of this project, which was approved by three competitiveness clusters, was to integrate French oil and protein seeds into animal feed in a sustainable manner in order to improve the protein autonomy of livestock farms. An opportunity to review the project with Mathieu Guillevic, PhD R&D Engineer and Project Manager at Valorex.

What was the objective of this collaborative innovation project?

Valorex led the research programme called “PROLEVAL”: PROtein crops, oLÉagineux, VALorisation animale from 2015 to 2021.

The programme had been labelled by 3 competitiveness clusters and appraised by the Ministries of Agriculture and Industry. The project was led by VALOREX, in partnership with INRAE and its 6 research units involved, TERRENA and DIJON-CEREALES.

Partenaires projet PROLEVAL

The objective of the PROLEVAL project is to integrate French oilseeds and protein crops into animal feed in a sustainable manner in order to improve the protein autonomy of livestock farms.

To this end, the PROLEVAL project partners have contributed to setting up a French production and processing chain for oilseed crops such as faba beans, peas, lupins and flax to feed monogastric animals and ruminants (faba beans, lupins, peas and flax).

What is the innovative nature of the project and what are the benefits?

The partners in the PROLEVAL project have worked together to produce a unique know-how for adding value to oil and protein seeds for the French agricultural sector. This know-how is based on a dual approach:

  • A specific supply of oil and protein seeds in order to optimise the intrinsic nutritional potential of the seeds. In addition to the organisation of the sector, the aim was to work on the choice of varieties and cultivation methods for faba bean, pea, lupin and flax seeds that are best suited to the territories and users, based on common objectives (agronomic behaviour, suitability for treatment processes, seed quality, etc.) and the circular economy.
    • PROLEVAL has enabled the identification of varieties and the definition of typical cultivation itineraries for PRODIVAL flax, lupin, faba bean and pea seeds.
    • Key figures: 698 variety tests, 269 technical itineraries
  • Technological treatments adapted to release the nutritional potential of seeds. The aim is to deploy industrial technologies adapted to the seeds to be used and the uses of these seeds for the various animal species. To do this, technologies for processing oil and protein seeds have been developed.
    • PROLEVAL has made it possible to highlight the best combinations of seed processing thanks to a combination of mechanical, enzymatic and thermomechanical technologies to concentrate and improve the digestibility of the nutrients of interest while eliminating anti-nutritional factors.
    • Key figures: 3,041 different technological modalities, 3 generations of products

PROLEVAL, based on this dual approach, makes it possible to obtain oil and protein seeds with nutritional values that were previously unequalled for these seeds, allowing production with improved intrinsic qualities and meeting the needs of the differentiation sectors while ensuring that their growth and health performances are maintained.

Graines oléo-protéagineuses PROLEVAL

Where are you today?

Today, the PROLEVAL research project is closed, but the work of Proleval is continuing on a regional scale, in particular in order to identify the best solutions for each territory to guarantee the most local autonomy possible for the existing protein crop plots.

In addition, PROLEVAL’s work has given rise to a new range of multi-species feeds in 2021: INEVO. This range, unique on the market, is the only one today to combine two actions (varietal selection, cultivation itineraries and guaranteed price contracts; a combination of technological seed treatments) to improve the nutritional value of oilseeds.

This new range of feeds, INEVO, has been developed by and for the French agricultural sector.

The INEVO range aims to respond to current societal challenges:

  • Food security and balance through protein autonomy: protein produced in France or in Europe, reduction of protein imports;
  • Local origin of food: proximity of seed production islands, processors and users;
  • Sustainable agriculture through the reduction of environmental impacts: reduction of imported deforestation, reduction of the carbon weight of agricultural production, production of environmentally friendly seed legumes; Through the reduction of the use of genetically modified organisms: By reducing the use of genetically modified organisms: the use of imported GMO soya is replaced by relocated oilseeds; By reducing inputs: seed legumes fix atmospheric nitrogen and do not require nitrogen fertilisers; By improving soil and water management and adapting to climate change; By improving biodiversity in the fields

The INEVO offer responds to the approaches of sectors seeking to respond to these major issues in the service of French agriculture from the field to the consumer’s plate. Among these differentiation channels, Bleu-Blanc-Cœur acts for an agriculture that respects the animals and the earth for the health of all.

Finally, on the strength of the results obtained in the framework of the PROLEVAL project, Valorex has just injected 3.5 million euros, part of which was financed by the France Recovery Plan, into the creation of an industrial tool specific to pulses: new storage cells; a fragmentation and concentration line; and the improvement of a cooking line for seeds.

Photo illustration sucess story Proleval Valorial

What does collaborative innovation mean to you? 

As an SME with a wide range of activities in the agricultural and food sector, collaborative innovation is both an obvious necessity for us, in order to adjust our means of innovation to the best advantage. Our collaboration with a large number of research laboratories, technical centres, schools and companies is historic, but it will also be futuristic, both to continue to build the basis of our business project and to ensure that it is recognised at scientific, institutional and political levels.

Project data sheet

  • Title of the project : PROLEVAL: PRotéagineux, OLEagineux, VALorisation animale: Integration of French oleo-proteaginous crops in livestock feed via the food chain, from plants to humans, with the aim of meeting societal expectations.
  • Leader :  Valorex
  • Project type : Structuring
  • Thematic focus : Innovative technologies
  • Start Date : October 2014 - End date : October 2019 - Duration : 72 months
  • Total project cost : 17 M€ - Total support : 8 M€
  • Public co-funders : PSPC, BPIFRANCE


Guillaume Chesneau - Valorex
Director of Research & Innovations

06 19 92 54 04