The people behind the products: Meet Elsa Parmentier, R&D Project Manager, Yeast Process Development
Elsa is part of our R&D Product and Process Development team, based in Toulouse, and she is in charge of designing the best recipes to produce our existing and future yeast-based products.
Can you introduce yourself?
I’m Elsa Parmentier, and I joined Lallemand Animal Nutrition in 2020, as Project Manager in the R&D Product and Process Development team on projects related to yeasts. Before moving back to Toulouse where I’m originally from, I was living in Belgium for the past 6 years.
I studied biochemistry and fermentation engineering in Toulouse. I’ve always been working in Process R&D– I started 10 years ago – but for different industry types such as agrofood, pharma and now animal nutrition.
Why did you come to work in yeast process development?
I really enjoy Process R&D because you’re the interface between the research teams, marketing, and production. To me that’s the main point of the job, you’re here to create a product considering everyone’s need while working with everyone! You are surrounded by different personalities, different expertises, and at the end of the day, you learn a lot.
What does your job consist of and what do you like about it?
What I really enjoy is that you create and implement at an industrial scale new products and/or new processes. Starting from a lab-scale concept, you create a dedicated process to obtain what you wish in terms of product, application, quality, etc… that will be finally applied in production and proposed to our customers. It’s a very concrete part of the research work.
The second part of our work is to have a strong collaboration with the yeast production plants (we often travel there) with the purpose to monitor the process, record changes, and track all the experience available so that we can for example optimize the processes or move production between different sites.
What is the most important thing to consider in R&D process?
In R&D process, the goal is to create a product that answers the initial need of the concept. What matters to us once we have the final product ready, is to have the demonstration of its efficacy in vitro and in vivo. Our main objective is to obtain a product that is as effective as we were imagining when working on the concept and that brings real benefits and value to our customers.
Which products are you currently working on?
I’m working on all the live yeast strains for probiotic applications, and the yeast derivatives, such as inactivated yeasts and yeast fractions used in prebiotics applications, for the Lallemand Animal Nutrition portfolio. My job is really about getting the maximum out of the yeast to find a maximum of possible animal nutrition applications.
Regarding the new products, we have recently developed a new hydrolyzed yeast product that is an interesting alternative protein source and is also used for its palatability properties. It offers both nutritional and functional advantages to support the growth and health of young animals.
We also launched last year a new yeast cell wall product (insoluble fraction of the yeast cell), developed to address the demand of specific segments of the market, such as the broiler industry.
And more is coming with other future new product development or improvement of our current products, to enhance their efficacy and quality.