Roxlor International's, Manasquan, N.J., BeFloray begins with inulin from chicory roots that is enzymatically hydrolyzed to form oligofructose. The result is a short chain oligofructose of 2-8 DP, which is more easily soluble in aqueous systems than inulin. This is combined with a specially grown mung bean extract. The extract is derived from mung beans that are physically enriched with a nutritive medium containing small amounts of acesulfame K. The plant physically absorbs the sweetener into its structure, which maintains the sweet taste while masking any aftertaste. The enriched plants undergo a cold temperature extraction process, and the resulting enriched mung bean extract is blended with the oligofructose.
The completed blends can be labeled oligofructose, fructose, mung bean extract and acesulfame K on an ingredient statement. There are two blends, BeFlora, which has the same sweetness level as sugar and about 88% prebiotic fiber; and BeFlora Plus, which has 10 times the sweetness of sugar and about 50% prebiotic fiber. The first is used as a bulking agent in baking, and the second is used as a sugar replacement. Inclusion of 1% BeFlora Plus in a formulation yields less than 250ppm of acesulfame K in the final formulation.
“Our product is dietetic and diabetic friendly,” says Robert Veghte, product manager. “Its use is encouraged by the Diabetic Syndicate of France, and it has been used in Europe for eight years.”
Stability In Many ApplicationsThe clean flavored, powdered ingredients are heat stable to 300°F and stable at pH above 3.5. They perform well in many processes including baking, boiling, frying and freezing. At very high cooking temperatures, additional amounts of the oligofructose may break down into fructose.
The bulking agent version works well in baked goods such as cookies, cakes, biscuits, and muffins. In baked goods, the fiber helps retain moisture and keeps products fresher longer. BeFlora Plus goes into beverage sweetener blends with other high intensity sweeteners where it rounds out flavors and produces a better-tasting product. In fact, it is an effective masking agent that covers many types of flavors and gives good results with soy protein, and vitamin and mineral enrichment blends.
Other applications for the products include dairy products, desserts, confections, fruit preparations, powdered drinks, herbal teas, supplements, snack bars and sauces. In chocolate-flavored products, it contributes to a nice, smooth flavor.
The fiber component of the ingredients has been shown in many studies to provide health benefits. It improves intestinal transit time and supports regularity. The fiber is broken down in the large intestine into short chain fatty acids that nourish beneficial bifido bacteria. It also has been shown to improve the absorption of calcium, help balance lipid and cholesterol metabolism and strengthen the immune system.