It’s well-known within the food industry that consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the ingredients found in the food that they consume. This trend remains on the rise today, with great importance thus being given to clean-label ingredients as the industry looks to meet these consumer demands.
Clean-label foods and drinks are defined by consumers as those which contain ingredients which are easily recognisable, minimally processed, natural and without additives or preservatives. Therefore, clean-label foods are perceived as better-for-you.
An important consideration to keep in mind is how clean-label foods are no longer merely a trend. They are, in fact, an expectation and necessary in order for brands to remain relevant and competitive.
While expectations from consumers of the availability of clean-label foods and drinks is high, as are expectations regarding the quality, flavour, texture, nutrition and price of such. In all, it can be understood that clean-label ingredients are no longer just a trend, they are the expectation, and a high one at that.
Thus, the defining challenge for our industry is clear: How do we remove ingredients from food and drinks without compromising product taste, texture, nutrition, safety, shelf life and price?
Well, the answer lies in the development of forward-thinking and cutting-edge clean-label ingredients as a means to set brands up for success. In order to meet demand for clean-label foods, a thorough comprehension of the latest clean-label ingredients is thus imperative.
So, what exactly are the latest developments within the sector? Here are the top 5 latest clean-label ingredients that have been introduced to the market over the past month.
1) EXBERRY Colouring Foods
GNT’s two newly launched EXBERRY® Colouring Foods have come into the industry to join the ‘colouring food with food’ practice. Made from turmeric and spirulina, two well-known and on-trend ingredients offering widespread consumer acceptance.
The EXBERRY® Shade Jade Green provides a bright, bluish green shade, while the EXBERRY® Shade Lime Green delivers a yellowish green hue. Both shades are liquid-based which means they have no impact on taste in the final application as a result of the physical, water-based methods used to create the colours. They can be utilised across a wide array of applications such as confectionery fruit jellies and hard-panned products including dairy-like yogurt, ice cream and decorative bakery coatings.
Product Manager at GNT, Sonja Scheffler, has reported that The EXBERRY® Shade Jade Green and Shade Lime Green “provide good overall performance and wonderfully vibrant shades while supporting completely clean and clear labels.”
The two EXBERRY® shades are created from edible, non-GMO fruit, vegetables and plants using physical processing methods and no chemical solvents. As a result, they offer a perfect solution for the modern market, opening up new opportunities for clean-label greens.
2) ChickP Ltd. Vegan Mayo Substitute
ChickP has developed an isolate comprised of 90% protein to be used as a compelling egg replacer for vegan food formulations, such as vegan mayonnaise. Using all the extractable components of the chickpea, this clean-label ingredient is able to substitute the traditional dependence on modified starches, hydrocolloids and stabilisers for emulsification and flavour.
As the demand for vegan, vegetarian and allergen-free products continues to grow, the global egg replacement ingredient market has been estimated by Future Marketing Insights to attain a value of $1.5bn by the year 2026.
While an abundance of egg-free mayonnaise alternatives and dressings exist on the market, not all of them achieve vegan or allergen-free labels. This is due to the fact it is typically common practice for these products to make use of ingredients such as whey protein concentrate or various nuts and starches.
ChickP’s innovative solutions bring to the market an ingredient which allows for a cleaner label, while likewise being vegan, allergenic-friendly and a powerful and holistic nutritional boost.
This egg replacer for vegan food formulations gives companies the opportunity to further simplify and shorted their labels, given how ChickP’s isolate ingredient is made up of oil, water, chickpea protein, vinegar, sugar, spice and flavours. These easily recognisable ingredients thus effectively meet current consumers demands for clean-label foods.
ChickP’s isolate is currently impressively being used as a one-to-one replacement for egg yolk while demonstrating superior foaming capabilities due to its high solubility and smooth texture which likewise possesses minimal off-notes in regard to flavour.
3) Lindt Excellence Cocoa Pure
Lindt & Sprungli has launched a new dark chocolate bar made 100% from the cocoa fruit and nothing else.
Unlike conventional chocolate production which discards the cocoa pulp, Lindt Master Chocolatiers have expertly leveraged the natural sweetness of the pulp and extracted from it, through a ‘new and innovative method’, and incorporated it into their new chocolate bar.
Lindt’s Excellence Cocoa Pure chocolate bar is completely natural and composed of merely two ingredients: cocoa bean (82%) and cocoa fruit pulp (18%).
The use of the cocoa fruit pulp as a means to sweeten this dark chocolate bar is able to replace other common chocolate sweetening ingredients, such a refined sugar or artificial sweeteners, thus successfully making it more clean-labelled.
The use of the cocoa pulp as a means to sweeten the chocolate has further allowed Lindt to create a chocolate bar that is highly sustainable. Less food waste is created, as the whole of the cocoa fruit is able to be utilised to create this chocolate product. This not only meets current consumer demands for clean-label foods, but likewise meets the growing demands for foods which are both better-for-you and environmentally friendly.