Prepared Foods September 19, 2005 eNewsletter

Chr. Hansen, a global biotechnology firm that produces ingredients for the nutrition, animal health and drug industries, has launched a functional ingredients portfolio for organic products.

In the U.S. alone, this market is growing at about 20% annually. However, sourcing and formulating organic ingredients can present challenges and unexpected results for processors, as they can significantly impact the product development process, as well as finished-product quality and shelflife, the firm notes.

The company joins the market with a portfolio of colors, flavors, seasonings and dairy and probiotic cultures for use in foods labeled made with organic ingredients, as defined by the American National Organic Program (NOP). The firm says that it achieves its NOP-compliance via a self-assessment of suppliers and processes that include purchasing, regulatory, development and manufacturing.

Organic colors, like Annatto for Cheddar cheese, must be derived from natural sources, which can make them less stable and more difficult to produce specific hues. The firm, which is a market leader in natural colors, has developed a range of hues that are acid-, heat- and light-stable in foods and beverages, some of which can also be used as phytonutrients.

The Denmark-headquartered firm says that it can also make customized organic flavors and seasonings tailored to the client's functional and taste requirements.