People may be more acquainted with the herb rosemary than they think. Rosemary has a long tradition as a spice for foods, bringing its piney, pungent, minty and sweet flavor characteristics to a variety of dishes, including meats, soups, salad dressings and sauces. However, today one of its primary uses in prepared foods is as a natural preservative due to its powerful antioxidant properties. Most people never notice its presence, due to its labeling as a natural flavor.
Oil-soluble rosemary extracts have been used since the 1990s in the food industry as natural preservatives in meats and other oil-soluble food matrices. However, today, water-soluble rosemary extracts are gaining in popularity, due to their functionality in a variety of water-soluble applications such as salad dressings and natural and functional beverages. Water-soluble rosemary extracts are manufactured by Naturex Inc., under the brand names StabilEnhance® WSR, ColorEnhance® and Flavor’Plus™. Water-soluble rosemary extracts contain rosmarinic acid, which is a natural hydrophilic phenol. Other companies may carry WSR, but only Naturex has WSR products that are specific to protecting color and citrus flavor degradation (U.S. patents #5,908,650, WO9714319 and #6,306,450).
StabilEnhance is standardized up to 20% rosmarinic acid, organic-compliant and GRAS. It is used to mitigate the deterioration of flavors in beverages. It has a fresh tea-like note that allows its use in many applications. In soft drinks, StabilEnhance can extend the freshness of the flavor and color stability during storage. In lager beers, it can enhance freshness and maintain the original flavor. StabilEnhance imparts a dual benefit for tomato-based products, both protecting the color of the tomato and also preserving lycopene content over time.
Flavor’Plus is primarily used with flavors to maintain freshness and delay the degradation of the flavor. Both Flavor’Plus and StabilEnhance WSR can be used with high carotenoid applications to prevent color loss and off-flavors. Salad dressings and meats also benefit from the use of Flavor’Plus by helping them to maintain freshness, and in meats, it has the added benefit of bringing a fresh typical herb flavor.
ColorEnhance is specific for allowing the increased stability and enhanced color in products containing anthocyanins. Through an action of copigmentation, it is able to actually deepen and intensify the natural color. ColorEnhance also imparts a fresh tea note and is compatible with many applications.
“One of the best things about Naturex water-soluble rosemary, besides being all-natural, GRAS and suitable in organic applications,” adds Antoine Dauby, marketing manager for Naturex, “is that it is also label-friendly, in that it only needs to be identified as a natural flavor.”
For more information:
Naturex Inc., South Hackensack, N.J.
Samuel Menard, 201-440-5000