Business activities: PYRAGENA is an experimental station of the pig industry Bayonne ham, opened in December 1998. We do comparative tests on the raw material, demonstrations of new manufacturing technologies and provide answers to technological problems of companies of all sizes. Among our activities, we control the quality of fresh meat, improve the quality of dry-cured hams, reduce salt concentrations in dry cured hams, diversification of pig production, promote cured products, and improve energy management in companies.

PYRAGENA provides services in the areas of research, experimentation, training and technical support. We offer a technology platform of 3000m², meeting rooms and conference facilities. In 10 years, the experimental station of PYRAGENA contributed to the formation of 10,000 students, artisans and professionals of the agri-food industry. The training provided by PYRAGENA is often managed by professional fund companies.

Technical support: One of the missions PYRAGENA is to help companies in their quality approach. Our technical support is to build capacity to implement disease control plans, including the completion of diagnosis, audits and advice.

Technology: Training in food technology allows participants to get and improve their knowledge in a specific area. The experimental station counts with a professional team providing guidance and advice to professionals, students in different thematic areas like packaging, preservation and use of local products.

Risk Prevention: We also provide an approach to risk prevention which ensures health, improves working conditions for employees and contributes to better performance and organization of a company.

Food Safety: The food companies have an obligation to produce results and must implement the methods necessary to ensure food safety to final consumption. The dangers to food safety may be made at any stage of the food chain: the courses offered are intended to educate staff, implement working methods, hygiene, and incorporate the requirements of the regulations.

Role in the consortium: PYRAGENA will collaborate with IRTA during the creation of mathematical models for the Jambon du Bayonne. Raw meat will be send from the region of Bayonne to IRTA in Girona (Spain). During the validation stage, PYRAGENA will make test with the QMEAT system at their facilities in Bayonne. PYRAGENA will be also very active in dissemination of QMEAT technology among their associates in France through seminars, conferences and training courses.

Expected benefits: PYRAGENA expects to introduce in the region of Aquitanie new technology for the selection and sorting of best raw meat for the production of Jambon du Bayonne. QMEAT will represent a real advance in the production of ham, making possible the production of cured ham with a consistent quality. PYRAGENA also expects to get recognition of the sector in France for the investigation and development of new methods to improve the quality of traditional cured products. A system like QMEAT will also contribute to keep our training labour to our associates. This project will let to be in contact with other research institutions, increasing our network of contacts and favouring the exchange of knowledge.