Protein extraction from agri-food residues for integration in biorefinery: Potential techniques and current status

Bioresour Technol. 2019 May;280:459-477. doi: 10.1016/j.biortech.2019.02.040. Epub 2019 Feb 8.


The biorefinery concept is attracting scientific and policy attention as a promising option for enhancing the benefits of agri-food biomass along with a reduction of the environmental impact. Obtaining bioproducts based on proteins from agri-food residues could help to diversify the revenue stream in a biorefinery. In fact, the extracted proteins can be applied as such or in the form of hydrolyzates due to their nutritional, bioactive and techno-functional properties. In this context, the present review summarizes, exemplifies and discusses conventional extraction methods and current trends to extract proteins from residues of the harvesting, post-harvesting and/or processing of important crops worldwide. Moreover, those extraction methods just integrated in a biorefinery scheme are also described. In conclusion, a plethora of methods exits but only some of them have been applied in biorefinery designs, mostly at laboratory scale. Their economic and technical feasibility at large scale requires further study.

Keywords: Agri-food residue; Biorefinery; Lignocellulosic residue; Plant protein; Protein extraction.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomass
  • Crops, Agricultural*
  • Humans
  • Plant Proteins / isolation & purification*


  • Plant Proteins