Yogurt Gets a Lift

One popular polydextrose can now be used to create reduced-calorie, prebiotic, fiber-enriched, reduced-sugar yogurt products and beverages. Litesse® polydextrose from Danisco USA Inc. is easy to use in most dairy and yogurt applications and can be added before or after fermentation, or as part of the fruit preparation of fruit yogurt to replace the bulk of sugar. Available in both liquid and powder forms, Litesse remains stable during processing and shelflife of dairy products. Danisco USA Inc., Donna Brooks, 800-255-6837, ext. 2521, donna.brooks@danisco.com, www.danisco.com

Locking Out Fat

A thin, invisible layer of fat-impenetrable protein can be added to fish, chicken or meat during food processing. Nutrilean® protein from Proteus Industries Inc. can dramatically reduce the amount of cooking oil that normally seeps into meat during frying, and the process locks in moisture and fat absorption. With the help of ROMICON® ultrafiltration technology from Koch Membrane Systems, Proteus can cost-effectively concentrate the proteins, while preserving the molecular structure of the organic compounds—enabling them to keep the fat out of, and the moisture in, fried foods. Proteus Industries Inc., Doug Hall, 978-281-9545, rdhall@proteusindustries.com, www.proteusindustries.com

Delivering Nutrients

Three major innovations in nutrient delivery create a fast-track product development engine for highly effective, differentiated and patentable products in tablet, capsule and powder forms. Balchem Encapsulates introduces VitaRelease™, The Lipid Network™, VitaShure™, The Lipid Particle™ and VitaSmooth™, The Smooth Dissolve Matrix™. With each of these technologies, Balchem can recommend or develop the formulation quickly, saving months of product development, while delivering highly effective IP-protected dosage forms with excellent long-term cost advantage. Balchem Encapsulates, 877-222-8811, www.balchem.com

Fragrance Fusion

Globalization has led to a merging of business and culture and is spilling over into the food industry. Food fusions are the latest craze, defined as a collection of seasonings, spices, flavors and textures with meats, seafood, salads, pastas and soups from exotic countries. Bell Flavors and Fragrances, www.beliff.com

Extreme Flavor

A leader in flavor technology introduces the first in a line of high-impact, true-fruit, natural flavor profiles that are modern, multi-dimensional and unique. Robertet’s Xtreme Berry Flavors exhibit strong, juicy base notes with light, fresh-picked fruity topnotes to complete the taste/aroma profile. Formulating with Xtreme Flavors will add intensity and excitement to help transform good consumer products into something outstanding. Applications include beverages, yogurts, snacks and soy bases. Robertet Flavors Inc., Gretchen Schleck, 732-981-8300, gschleck@RobertetUSA.com, www.robertet.com

Expanded Snacking Pleasure

Dill Pickle, Tomato Basil, Firecracker Cheese and Hot Mustard are all on-trend flavors and are part of a new product line of snack seasonings. Land O’ Lakes Ingredient Solutions announces an expansion of it snack seasonings line—a complement to the company’s strong dairy focus. These will help salty snack companies meet today’s consumers’ taste preferences. Land O’ Lakes® Snack Seasonings are designed for topical application to salty-type snacks such as chips, puffs and pretzels. Land O’ Lakes Ingredient Solutions, www.landolakes.com

Go Goji

A new, goji-flavored beverage is among several applications with beneficial ingredients from a leading global flavor and fine ingredients company. Frutarom’s Benolea® and Alina™, ingredients that support cardiovascular health, enhance the great-tasting beverage. Benolea is a branded ingredient clinically proven to support a beneficial blood pressure range, while Alina is a patented, new plant source of omega-3s from salvia seed. Frutarom, 952-920-7700, www.frutarom.com

Taking a Cotton to It

Due to its neutral flavor and stability without hydrogenation, cottonseed oil has seen a doubling in demand in recent years. Higher-than-expected yields in 2007 could improve the supply of the stable cooking oil in the future. Since New York City banned trans fats in restaurants, there has been a growth in demand for stable, healthy cooking oils like cottonseed. With the industry’s departure from hydrogenated oils and reformulations still in the works, cottonseed oil should continue to be an increasingly popular oil. National Cottonseed Products Association, 901-682-0800, info@cottonseed.com, www.cottonseed.com

Ice is Nice

Creaminess, shelflife and stability are the key elements to making high-quality ice cream. Sherex Enlite, from Kerry Bio-Science, enables manufacturers to improve product quality via addressing these critical elements more effectively. The range is designed specifically to address common manufacturing issues around fine and stable foam structure, often caused by recipe reformulation for standard, low-fat and economy dessert manufacturing. By adding Sherex Enlite, the creaminess of the texture is retained, and there is good aeration, fine and stable air cells and controlled ice crystal growth—creating a creamy and indulgent mouthfeel overall. Kerry Bio-Science, Netherlands, +31 36 5233 100, www.kerrygroup.com 

Authentic Flavor

Consumers seeking variety and authentic eating experiences need look no further than a new series of proprietary natural ingredients for natural cheese and dairy flavors. Givaudan Flavours enable manufacturers to provide consumers with specific varietal cheese characteristics, such as Emmental or Camembert, in a variety of products like sauces, dressings, process cheese, seasonings and snacks. Givaudan’s TasteEssentials™ program enables their flavorists to develop taste solutions that please food producers and consumers alike. Givaudan Flavours, Switzerland, +41 22 780 9111, corp.communications@givaudan.com, www.givaudan.com

The Oat Advantage

One of the best ways to control overeating is to ensure fiber-rich foods are part of the diet. Several independent studies have found that oat-based, value-added ingredients, such as GTC Nutrition’s OatVantage™ oat bran concentrate, are beneficial in weight control because of their ability to slow sugar uptake in the body, thus producing a filling effect to help maintain a feeling of satiety. OatVantage is an ingredient solution for product manufacturers looking to develop weight management and glycemic health products. It is a natural, oat-based ingredient that contains 54% beta-glucan soluble fiber—up to 18 times more than in regular oats. GTC Nutrition, Trina O’Brien, 303-468-5077, tobrien@gtcnutrition.com, www.gtcnutrition.com

Creamy Goodness

Manufacturers looking for ingredients to create yogurts that have a creamier, more dessert-like texture, yet still offer the benefits of probiotics and nutrients like calcium and iron, need look no further. TIC Gums recently developed a stabilizer system called TIC Pretested® Dairyblend YGFB3, which meets the needs of yogurt makers who are developing products with a healthier image. By using this blend, a manufacturer can include higher amounts of soluble dietary fiber without sacrificing the smooth and creamy texture consumers expect. TIC Gums, 800-899-3953, svandevheuvel@ticgums.com, www.ticgums.com

Shake the Weight Off

There has never been a better time to make a ready-to-drink weight management shake part of a weight-management line. Even more benefits can be added to these shakes through use of Fabuless™, the breakthrough satiety ingredient from DSM. With Fabuless, consumers will feel more satisfied throughout the day. Boosting the satiety benefit in a RTD weight management shake means dieters will consume fewer calories per day, because it helps moderate their appetite. Fabuless is a patented special emulsion of highly purified oat and palm oils that creates satiety through the Ileal brake mechanism. Fabuless has been incorporated into a great-tasting RTD product named Allevo that was launched last year by Cederoth International in Europe. DSM Nutritional Products Inc., 800-526-0189, www.nutraaccess.com

Wild Antioxidant Power

New research in the current issue of Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry shows that wild blueberries have the highest cellular antioxidant activity of the selected fruits tested. The study has taken the next step toward understanding antioxidant activity by examining how antioxidants react with cells. This is a stronger measure of how antioxidant compounds will potentially react in the body. Wild blueberries performed better in cells than cranberries, apples, red and green grapes. Wild Blueberry Association of North America, www.wildblueberries.com

Top Trends for 2008

With the new year approaching, new product developments promise better health and appeal to the taste buds. Datamonitor’s Productscan Online outlined 10 trends in consumer-packaged goods for 2008. Probiotics, no longer limited to yogurt, are seeing launches in the cheese and chocolate categories. Organic foods and beverages for kids are expected to rise, as well as the up-and-coming “fresh” trend. Steam-and-eat food products have tripled between 2005 and 2007, according to Productscan. Also of note are high-nutrient “superfruits,” as açai, goji berries, noni and pomegranates go mainstream, with larger companies getting into the game. The mystery of African ingredients may make it to American shores, as an influx of African ingredients like hot peppers and couscous gain ground.

For the sleep-deprived, look for a growing market of sleep aids and stress-relieving products that promote sleep, such as a new milk from Japan, which comes from cows milked at the crack of dawn and is naturally high in the sleep aid, melatonin.

As the population ages, bold flavors make up for older consumers’ sensory loss, and caffeine lovers are in luck with a plethora of caffeine-infused products—from sunflower seeds to instant oatmeal.

Finally, “going green” is going to be much easier in 2008, as packaged goods manufacturers are finding creative ways to be green and planet-friendly. Everything from wind-power produced fermentation to reusable cleaning product bottles will be available to eco-conscious consumers.

Environment Drives Major Food and Beverages Trends

Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) predicts 2008 U.S. trends will be as follows:

1. Bottled water backlash. Consumers are becoming aware of the environmental impact of these products.

2. Carbon footprint. Manufacturers will discuss company-wide environmental initiatives rather than the carbon footprint of specific products.

3. Fair trade expansion. More fair trade-certified products will appear in the U.S., Latin America and Asia.

4. Ancient and sacred grains. Amaranth, quinoa, teff, millet and Kamut will move mainstream.

5. Salt. More use of sea salt and "place" salts (e.g., Hawaiian red clay salt).

6. Junk-free foods. Less and/or better explained additives.

7. Clean labels. Products with easily understood ingredients.

8. Transparency throughout the system. More information on ingredient sourcing, processing and packaging will be provided.

9. Faux genomics. Companies will try to customize products to individual needs. Products delivering a specific single benefit will increase.

10. Experiential shopping. Examples include more in-store dining, warmer lighting and more built-in sampling stations.

For 10 global trends, visit www.mintel.com/press_release.php?id=309783.