4 Apr 2022
Healthier foods top today’s shopping lists – but the nutritious yet delicious puzzle is one food producers are still trying to solve. Our Taste Tomorrow research revealed consumers are taking two routes in their quest for health – 60% prefer to eat fewer or smaller portions and 58% choose healthier alternatives. But taste and texture still reign supreme.
For producers keen to cater to both types of consumers, two options are on the table: resize or reformulate.
Whether it is integrating ‘healthier’ options into portfolios, replacing or reducing fat and sugar, or revaluating portion size, opportunities abound. Although cutting portion sizes can be a straightforward exercise, reformulation takes a little more consideration – but with the right innovations, it is possible to capitalize on this growing trend.
Striking the balance between tasty and healthy can be challenging – but the rewards are certainly fruitful. Fortunately, ‘power ingredients’, such as fruit, fiber and multigrains, find that coveted but elusive sweet spot. Adding these ingredients not only fortifies products, packing them full of micronutrients to support a healthy weight, digestion, gut health or even immunity and mental well-being, but also enhances the eating experience. Puravita Sprouted Grains, for example, can boost the nutritional profile of baked goods, increasing vitamin, mineral and fiber content, without diminishing flavor. In fact, the unique sprouting process unlocks natural tastes and textures, resulting in malty, rich and sweet notes.
Similarly, technical fruit fillings have been developed to overcome traditional barriers to fruit inclusion in bakery, such as loss of flavor or nutritional value and moisture migration. Our range of fruit fillings, packed with up to 90% of top-quality fruit, can be used in a variety of applications and have outstanding bake stability. As well as tasty and healthy, they’re popular among consumers too. Our Taste Tomorrow research indicated that 92% of consumers are attracted by the taste of fruit fillings, while 64% believe they are healthy.
Solutions such as these are specifically designed to allow healthy ingredients to be seamlessly incorporated into recipes, with little to no modifications to current processes. As well as boosting the nutritional value of the end product, the natural sweetness of these ingredients can also open the door to reducing added sugar in recipes.
The essential link between excessive fat and sugar consumption and non-communicable diseases, such as obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, is sounding an alarm for consumers. As governments around the world ramp up plans to cut down, enforcing sugar tax schemes, restricting energy-dense food sales, and introducing front of packaging schemes like Nutri-Score, limiting fat and sugar intake is front and center of consumers’ minds. Yet, these are vital ingredients in bakery, patisserie and chocolate making, playing crucial roles in volume, texture improvements, such as softness, short bite, crumb moistness, and melting mouthfeel, as well as flavor and sweetness.
Thankfully, advancements in ingredient technology have landed at just the right time, allowing bakers, patissiers, chocolatiers and various food manufacturers to reduce these elements without compromising on taste. Taking it one step further, at Puratos, we have chosen to base our chocolate reformulation on natural fibers, resulting in sugar-reduced solutions that not only have more appealing ingredient lists, but also more balanced nutritional profiles. Our Belcolade Selection Noir and Lait Sugar-Reduced innovations contain 40% less sugar, offering opportunities for sugar-reduced chocolate products, but also boast a ‘source of fiber’ claim – so customers can take a two-pronged approach to meeting consumer health & well-being goals. This is achieved without sacrificing the superior taste and texture and perfectly balanced flavor of real Belgian chocolate.
Our fat and sugar-reducing solutions extend beyond chocolate. For example, Puraslim, our innovative range of improvers and mixes, can help reduce fat content by up to 75% in soft and sweet breads, while keeping them outstandingly soft and fresh.
Catering for the increasingly discerning consumer can seem a demanding task but with subtle changes to existing recipes, bakers, patissiers and chocolatiers can successfully create added value products that boast both exceptional flavor and enhanced nutritional qualities. Ready-to-use, convenient, versatile solutions are key ingredients in helping our customers to effortlessly bolster their portfolio and meet the widespread demand for ‘health halo’ appeal and delicious taste.