Posts Tagged ‘clean label’

Video: Clean Labels Showcased at Food Expo

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

More than ever before, consumers want to know exactly what is in their food. They want to recognize the ingredients listed and prefer natural foods with no additives or preservatives. This desire for a clean label has posed many formulation challenges for food manufacturers. Food Technology magazine’s Senior Digital Editor Kelly Hensel explored how Briess Malt & Ingredients and Ingredion are helping manufacturers meet this challenge through their ingredient solutions on display at the 2014 IFT Food Expo.

Chromeless Video Player branded for IFT


Clean Label is the New Natural

Tuesday, June 24th, 2014

Mintel presentationThere were 2,363 food product recalls in 2011. This is the fact that David Jago, Director of Innovation and Insight at Mintel, shared with attendees at the company’s Ingredients and Innovation Zone (Booth 1641) on Monday afternoon. “The result from all the product scares is that consumers trust companies less than they ever have before,” said Jago. This mistrust and skepticism by consumers is compounded by the fact that they have more information available to them about food ingredients and the food supply.

Lynn Dornblaser, Director of Innovation and Insight at Mintel, pointed out that the term “clean label” is really an industry term. For consumers, a “clean” label is one in which they recognize the ingredients on the label. In addition, they are products that have more natural ingredients and are less processed. In fact, Dornblaser shared data that shows that 38% of consumers consider all natural ingredients when making food purchasing decisions.

At the Mintel boothHow is this consumer desire translating to the market? Mintel’s data tracking product claims from 2009 to 2014 shows that “no additives” is the top claim on all new products launched globally. In the United States, all-natural claims are also very popular, but regulations in Europe keep this claim to a minimum. As for food categories that these claims are appearing in, Dornblaser said that they have high penetration in predictable areas such as baby food and products with simple formulations like juice drinks.

Deliciously Simple spreadProducts attempting to relay a clean label often showcase traditional ingredients and the absence of artificial components. An example is Unilever’s I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! Deliciously Simple spread, which has the message “100% taste, 0% artificial preservatives” on the packaging. Dornblaser pointed out that the use of the word “simple” in a product’s name is growing. Local ingredients also come into play under the clean label umbrella. Advertising an ingredient’s provenance sends a message to the consumer that the product is authentic and trustworthy.

“Natural positioning, including clean label, has become a part of consumers’ health and wellness vocabulary,” concluded Jago. “It’s entrenched in consumers’ minds, whether that’s right or wrong.” Jago and Dornblaser believe natural will become the norm in some countries and for some categories of food. The benefit for manufacturers? Natural can provide a route map to premium, added value, and artisan market segments.

 

 

When It Comes to Food, Perception Is Not Reality

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

subway sandwichEarlier this year, Vani Hari, the “Food Babe,” began an online petition targeting the additive azodicarbonamide, which was present in the bread used to make Subway sandwiches. Hari bolstered her drive for the removal of the additive by stating that azodicarbonamide was an ingredient in yoga mats and shoe soles and thus could not be safe for human consumption. During the session “Azodicarbonamide: A Case Study of Perceptions of the Safety of Food Ingredients,” on Sunday, June 22, Greg Noonan of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that the agency had approved azodicarbonamide as an additive to flour at 45 parts per million (ppm). Moreover, he pointed out that the FDA’s process to recognize food additives as safe is rigorous and involves several steps, including a full review of safety data (toxicology studies) and consumption data. Nevertheless, by April 2014 Subway had agreed to remove the additive from its loaves of bread. Why?

Linda Eatherton of Ketchum Global Food & Nutrition said that in the modern world, science does not have the respect that perhaps it once did. She identified three types of consumers: the general population, food-involved individuals, and food e-vangelists. The latter are highly educated influencers who are on a mission to change people’s minds about food and their purchasing decisions. Food e-vangelists such as Vani Hari feel stronger as they gain more public attention regardless of whether they are accurate or right, and their predominant mode of e-vangelizing is social media. They use Twitter and Facebook extensively, and stories that trend on social media platforms receive national attention from news media. This new paradigm of information dissemination challenges the old corporate norm of only providing information on a need to know basis.

In response, some manufacturers are abandoning ingredients that receive negative attention by food e-vangelists as well as food activists. This trend to produce products with clean labels has some manufacturers removing ingredients that are denigrated online and replace them with ingredients that seem clean but may be just as controversial. For example, nitrates on labels are being replaced with celery salts, which are still nitrates. According to Lisa Lefferts of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), this is counterproductive. CSPI jumped on the anti-azodicarbonamide bandwagon when it realized that Hari would be launching an online petition, and Lefferts said that the organization withdrew its approval for azodicarbonamide not solely because of the petition but also over concerns of the additive’s breakdown products urethane and semicarbazide. CSPI would like to eliminate all unnecessary risks from the food supply even if the risks are small. Legal does not equate with safe or safe enough, and safe does not equate with healthy.

Eatherton pointed out that the solution for food manufacturers in the age of social media knowledge is to stop fighting questions about ingredients and find a way to respond in a way that brings science and the scientific process forward.

 

Expo Regulatory Watch 2014

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

By Catherine Adams Hutt and A. Elizabeth Sloan

Here’s a preview of some of the regulatory topics and issues of importance that those attending 2014 IFT Annual Meeting Scientific Program sessions and touring the Food Expo will want to keep in mind.

• IOM and Health Canada. Arachidonic acid, choline, chromium, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), fiber (specifically, viscous and fermentable fibers), magnesium, niacin, potassium, protein, saturated fat, stearic acid, sodium, vitamin B-6, vitamin E, and zinc are the nutrients being considered for action by the Institute of Medicine and Health Canada. They will be part of the deliberations for the U.S. and Canadian DRI committees in 2014 and beyond.

• Clean Labels. One-quarter of consumers are serious clean-label advocates, per the 2013 Gallup Study of Clean Food & Beverage Labels. In descending order, “all natural”, “recognizable ingredients”, “no artificial ingredients”, “no added sugar”, “no high fructose corn syrup,” and “no MSG” were the most-sought-after attributes. One in five consumers were very worried about GMOs in 2013, according to Packaged Facts’ 2013 Non-GMO Foods.

• Menu Labeling. The Federal Menu Labeling Law passed as part of the Affordable Care Act of 2010, and proposed regulations have been issued. Restaurants with 20 or more units serving substantially similar menus will soon have to display calorie contents and provide nutrition information. Many restaurants are preparing for this pending requirement by reformulating existing menu items, creating demands on suppliers to be innovative with ingredients and flavors. Calories are not a primary concern for most consumers now, according to the International Food Information Council’s Food and Health Survey 2013. But what will happen when consumers see calorie counts next to the price of a menu item for the long-term?

• Bioengineered Foods/GMOs. Connecticut and Maine passed GMO labeling laws in 2013. Labeling will be mandated only if several other contiguous states pass similar labeling laws, but Vermont passed the first GMO labeling bill without a trigger clause, and it goes into effect in 2016. In 2013, a total of 54 bills were introduced across 26 states, and a Washington State ballot initiative narrowly lost (51% to 49%). In 2014, 35 bills have been introduced in 20 states, with an Oregon ballot initiative also on target for November 2014. National legislation has been introduced, H.R. 4432, that would mandate labeling of bioengineered food ingredients, but enable a nationally uniform approach.

Only 20% of consumers say they are “very worried” about GMOs, up from 10% in 2002; 50% are “somewhat worried.” The other 50% are not concerned or have not formed an opinion. Middle-income mothers in their 30s with young children and living in urban areas represent the primary demographic for non-GMO foods. Concern is driven by the media and grass roots/state and local legislative campaigns; this is not a question of science or regulatory concerns.

• Gluten-Free. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration published a Final Rule on Sept. 4, 2013, with an effective date of August 5, 2014, defining use of the terms gluten-free, free of gluten, no gluten, and without gluten.

Foods carrying a label with any of the above statements may contain no more than 20 ppm gluten. Foods that start with a gluten-containing ingredient may be labeled gluten-free if they have been further processed and the final food product contains no more than 20 ppm, but labeling must declare that they have been processed to remove gluten.

Consumers generally perceive gluten-free foods to be healthier. The majority of those buying gluten-free foods and beverages do not do so because they have Celiac Disease or suffer from gluten sensitivity. With interest in gluten-free skewing younger, a gluten-free label has the potential for attracting younger millennial consumers, even those with lower incomes.

Innova Market Insights’ Taste the Trend Pavilion

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

Innova Market Insights (Booth 3651) will offer attendees its Taste the Trend Pavilion. Taste the Trend is the place for hard-hitting data on new product trends. The Pavilion has become a true visitor favorite for both R&D and marketing teams at the IFT Food Expo and this year’s event will be no exception.

The 2014 pavilion will include a series of presentations on the trends taking product development forward. This will be illustrated with more than 200 innovative products from around the globe, including novel packaging ideas. This year’s display will feature analysis on issues ranging from clean label to savory flavor trends. Key presentations will be supported with new product development examples addressing the top 10 new consumer trends driving the industry today.

The Innova Market Insights team of expert staff will be on hand to guide visitors through the display and offer their insights. A dedicated website will contain the content from all the presentations on display after the show. Be sure to scan your badge and receive an electronic link to this data.

The following includes a schedule and description of this year’s discussion topics.

What’s next for clean label?
Sunday, June 22, at 12:00 p.m. | Monday, June 23, at 12:00 pm | Tuesday, June 24, at 12:00 p.m.

Top 10 trends for 2014
Sunday, June 22, at 1:30 p.m. | Monday, June 23, at 1:30 p.m. | Tuesday, June 25 at 1:30 p.m.

Sports nutrition tailors to specific needs
Sunday, June 22, at 3:00 p.m. | Monday, June 23, at 3:00 p.m. | Tuesday, June 25 at 3:00 p.m.

Mintel’s Ingredients and Innovation Zone

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

The Mintel Ingredients and Innovation Zone (Booth 1641) will feature presentations on ingredient, product, and consumer trends as well as the opportunity for attendees to interact with some of the world’s most successful and innovative products. Bringing research to life and investigating trends, Mintel experts provide real market examples and forecast how the trends will shape the future of the industry.

The following includes a schedule and description of this year’s discussion topics.

How Sweet is Sweet Enough?
Sunday, June 22 at 12:30 pm | Monday, June 23 at 10:45 am | Tuesday, June 24 at 10:30 am

Consumers aren’t afraid of sugar; they are afraid of too much sugar. Companies are addressing this “sweet” concern by shifting many of their products to lower-sugar formulations. Some promote their less-sugar status, others take a more covert approach. Mintel will look at what’s happening in the marketplace, the threat of government and regulatory intervention, and the needs of today’s sugar consumers. Presented by Dave Jago and Lynn Dornblaser, Mintel’s Directors of Innovation and Insights.

A Recipe for Change: Evolving Ingredient Landscape
Sunday, June 22 at 1:30 pm | Monday, June 23 at 11:45 am | Tuesday, June 24 at 11:15 am (at the IFT Innovation Theater) | Tuesday, June 24 at 2:00 pm

As reliability of crops fluctuates and global population increases, the food industry will need to proactively develop products that reflect a changing landscape. This session will tackle both sides of the GMO food debate, as well as focus on ingredient solutions for sustainability, cost-savings, and policy-changing ingredients. Presented by Stephanie Pauk and Nirvana Chapman, Mintel’s Global Food Science Analysts.

“Clean Label” is the New Natural
Sunday, June 22 at 2:15 pm | Monday, June 23 at 1:15 pm | Tuesday, June 24 at 11:30 am

The term “natural” has recently come under fire from the industry, government, and consumers. As a result, the food industry has introduced new and different descriptors to talk about natural values in the market. Although the term “clean label” has traditionally been an industry term, not consumer language, perhaps it will become a concept that is better understood by consumers. Hear what consumers have to say, and see and taste how companies globally are responding. Presented by Dave Jago and Lynn Dornblaser, Mintel’s Directors of Innovation and Insights.

Fighting Fatigue with Energy Claims
Sunday, June 22 at 3:30 pm | Monday, June 23 at 3:00 pm | Tuesday, June 24 1:00 pm

Talk of energy benefits have moved beyond the quick boost of an energy drink or a cup of coffee, and energy attributes and functional ingredients are now found in a far wider variety of products than merely beverages. Today, we see consumer interest in not only quick energy boosts but also slow, sustained energy, for benefits including weight management and hunger management. Mintel will look at what’s on the market and how benefits are conveyed. Presented by Dave Jago and Lynn Dornblaser, Mintel’s Directors of Innovation and Insights.

Future Threats to Health: What Ingredients are in the line of fire?
Sunday, June 22 at 4:30 pm | Monday, June 23 at 2:15 pm | Tuesday, June 24 at 3:00 pm

Mintel monitors consumer trends and the constant scrutiny the food industry has faced over food scandals, lack of transparency in food preparation, and questionable treatment of animals. Exploring case studies from the past, issues of the present, and projections on the future, Mintel will highlight ingredients at risk of losing the elusive stamp of consumer approval. Presented by Stephanie Pauk and Nirvana Chapman, Mintel’s Global Food Science Analysts.

The Balancing Act: Health, Wellness and the Brazilian Consumer
Monday, June 23 at 2:00 pm (at the IFT Innovation Theater)

How does the Brazilian consumer define wellness? Research shows they are giving increased importance to all aspects of their well being, both physical and emotional health. Join Mintel’s Lynn Dornblaser, Director of innovation & Insight, to discuss the changes in Brazilian lifestyles that are leading consumers to seek a healthier and more balanced life.

Clean Label Formulating Requires a Holistic Approach

Sunday, July 14th, 2013

Several speakers stressed the importance of taking a holistic view when formulating clean label products at a Sunday afternoon symposium. “You just can’t look at one ingredient when developing clean label products, you have to look at the entire product—texture, fat, flavor, preservatives, and more. It requires a holistic approach,” said Agnes Jones, Project Leader Technical Services, Ingredion. “You need to think about the product, consumer perceptions, and the regulatory environment,” added Stefan Hake with GNT USA. “When choosing colors from fruits and vegetables for a clean label application, you need to consider the medium or product, ingredients, processing, packaging and storage.”

Chef Michael Joy with Park 100 Foods discussed clean labeling from a culinary point of view. He said that many companies are “going back to the basics” because consumers buy what tastes good. “There is more interest in natural flavors, such as soy sauce, lemon, tomato, and mushroom—umami types that can reduce sodium,” said Joy. Other natural ingredients include natural starches and bean powder. The “back to basics” also includes recognizable cooking methods such as roasting, braising, and simmering.

Agnes Jones discussed functional native starches in clean label applications. “Native starches have limitations such as a short peak viscosity range and limited process tolerance, which results in undesirable texture,” said Jones. “Functional native starches perform similar to modified starches and can be labeled by their general name such as tapioca starch.” Functional native starches feature temperature tolerance, pH tolerance, shear tolerance, and are easy to use and handle.

As an example of a holistic approach to clean labeling, Jones discussed a case study of salad dressing. For the texturizer, the salad dressing replaced a modified starch with a functional native starch. Rosemary extract was used in place of EDTA as a preservative. For flavor, natural flavor enhancers replaced MSG. The nutritional profile and calories remained the same for both products.

Challenges and Opportunities in Clean Label Formulation

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

Session 52
July 14; 1:30–3 p.m.
Room S402

Ingredients ListThe market for natural and organic foods continues to outpace conventional foods, growing at double digits rates. In the absence of a legal definition for natural, “clean label” is the proposed working term. However, formulating in this space can be difficult. Learn about the opportunities and challenges in formulating clean label foods through application case studies in salad dressings, yogurts, and baked goods. Novel food texturizers, namely, functional native starches that help overcome challenges in this space and enable formulating clean label foods will be presented. In addition, a chef will offer the culinary perspective on challenges of clean label product development.

When formulating with natural colors to achieve a clean label, many options exist and many parameters are important to consider. Application, processing technique, and packaging all come into play. Part of this session will review the major benefits and challenges in formulating with natural colorants made from fruits and vegetables in order to achieve consistent results and product success.

Clean Label Potato Flakes

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

PotatoesAustrade Inc.’s (booth 3269) Agenflock 20.702 potato flakes are produced of select quality potatoes without additives and preservatives. The flakes are free flowing and feature a nice yellowish color.

Natural Flavors, Colors Here to Stay

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

by Kelly Hensel

“The economic downturn may have slowed growth, but ‘natural’ is here to stay,” said Mintel’s Lynn Dornblaser, Director CPG Trend Insight, in a presentation in the Special Events Pavilion on Tuesday, June 14. This is mainly due to the fact that U.S. consumers are demanding natural products because they equate natural with healthy. In fact, more than 60% of consumers agree with the statement that “If a product is labeled all natural it’s healthy.” In addition, some consumers will pay more for natural products in certain categories, especially children’s beverages.

Consumers are attracted to this “natural nutrition” because they see it as inherently good, fresh, and wholesome. As Dornblaser explained, consumers desire transparency in their food and beverages. “They are very suspicious of things they don’t understand and this translates into them being afraid of chemical names they can’t understand,” said Dornblaser. For this same reason, they are attracted to “clean” labels, which have a relatively small number of ingredients and those ingredients are identifiable. Natural colors and flavors can play a role in delivering these benefits that consumers are looking for.

In new product development traditional health claims are in a long-term decline. However, other claims are on the rise, including convenience and ethical and environmental. But natural claims take the cake with the highest number of new products over other product claims. In fact, more than 35% of all new products released in 2010 bore a natural claim.

Haagen Dazs FiveNot only are consumers seeking out products with natural claims, but companies can use these claims to enhance a premium product. For example, Haagen-Dazs launched its Five ice cream (made with just five simple, natural ingredients) in 2009 and since then it has outperformed the company’s other brand ice creams. However, natural isn’t just about premium; value priced items with natural claims work as well. Yoplait’s Simply… Go-Gurt yogurt is priced the same as non-natural yogurt, but it has no high fructose corn syrup and no artificial colors or flavors. This product sold $17 million in the first 71 weeks on the market.

Natural flavors and colors are popular claims around the world; however the desire for each varies from country to country. In Europe, both natural colors and flavors are highly valued in food, while the U.S. market has a stronger focus on artificial colors in foods. For beverages, European consumers once again value natural flavors and colors. Americans really desire natural flavors, which are driven by juices, but artificial colors are still used a lot. According to Mintel’s data, the five top food categories with natural colors and flavors are bakery, snacks, meals and meal centers, sauces and seasonings, and processed fish, meat, and eggs.

Dornblaser concluded the session by emphasizing that “consumers are attracted to all things natural but they see the see the whole picture.” This includes natural colors and flavors as well as other natural ingredients, natural sweeteners, and natural packaging. The focus in the future will be on the promotion of the positive, not the absence of negative ingredients. “Success is built on the brand values of transparency, trust, and simplicity,” explained Dornblaser. So, whether companies decide to “go natural” with their products, it is important to honest and simple with your messages and formulations (if possible) in order to build a trusting relationship with consumers.

Consumers Seek Simplicity, Innova Reports

Monday, July 19th, 2010

by Mary Ellen Kuhn

When it comes to food and beverages, consumers want to keep it simple, according to Innova Market Insights (“Taste the Trend” Booth 3660).

Consumers are seeking products made with simple, wholesome ingredients with minimal processing, and manufacturers are responding with an array of new “clean label” offerings. Lay’s Classic Potato Chips, for example, now feature the claim “made with three simple ingredients in as little as 24 hours, and that’s it.” Pillsbury Simply…Cookies are advertised as being “made with just the simple, whole ingredients you and your family know and love.”

Innova Market Insights tracked 987 new products using either the word “simple,” “simplest,” or “simplicity” in 2009 vs 467 tracked in 2008. Use of the word “pure,” “purity,” or “purely” grew from 3,013 in 2008 to 5,705 in 2009. Consumers are also being greeted with an array of new products marketed using terms such as “like grandma made,” “homemade,” and “homestyle.”

Even if a product doesn’t have a particularly healthful profile, consumers seem to be responding to simple ingredient statements, observed Lu Ann Williams, Head of Research at Innova Market Insights. So important is the drive toward simplicity that Innova ranked it as the year’s No. 1 trend.

No. 2 on Innova’s trend list is sustainability. The company listed the top 10 market categories for products with “sustainable claims” in 2009. They are as follows, in descending order: chocolate; tea; juice and juice drinks; fish and seafood; breakfast cereals; cake—pastries and sweet goods; sweet biscuits/cookies; vegetables; carbonates; and cooking sauces.

Here’s a round-up of the year’s Top 10 trends, per Innova.

1. Sense of Simplicity

2. Sustainable Gathers Steam

3. Continuing to Cook at Home – Driven by the economic downturn, more consumers are cooking at home, but often seeking to prepare higher quality products.

4. Inherent Nutrition – Rather than relying on specific health claims, for which it may be difficult to get regulatory approval, marketers are touting products’ inherent health benefits and natural goodness.

5. Functional Superstars – Healthful ingredients that have survived European regulators’ early rulings are moving to the forefront in functional foods as others are forced for the moment to rely on softer claims.

6. Going Immune – Interest in immunity-enhancing products may have been boosted by last year’s H1N1 virus; ingredients to boost immunity are turning up in a variety of product forms.

7. New Delivery for Energy – Energy is a popular benefit, and products positioned to deliver it are proliferating in a broad range of categories including drinks, bars, tea, breakfast cereals, and more.

8. ‘Free From’ Rises – More and more companies, including major players, are rolling out gluten-free and other “free-from” offerings.

9. Extreme Flavors – Rising levels of interest in very hot and extreme flavors are being reported, with major brands (i.e., Pringles Xtreme) launching products.

10. Real Authenticity – It’s no longer enough to simply create a product with a regional positioning: the product should be based on ingredients from a specific region and ideally even produced there.