As expensive and difficult as formulating good-tasting foods can be, food manufacturers appreciate as much help as they can get. A consultancy service that is strong in research and development, Park 100 Foods, Tipton, Ind., has grown from modest beginnings 25 years ago by helping food industry formulators offer consistently high-quality flavors, textures, appearances, and product mouthfeel. In order to ensure the best entrees, side dishes, sauces, gravies, soups and fruit toppings possible, the company relies on top ingredients and their suppliers.
Food products are developed at the Morristown, Ind., pilot plant, then scaled up to larger production batches at the Tipton location. “When we work closely with a customer, and after we have a food system he feels will succeed, we determine the pH, salt content, drainage weights, fat content, color, Brookfield viscosity, Bostwick viscosity and we use a refractometer for Brix values,” explains David Alves, vice president. During scale-up, employees exactly match the values of several of these parameters. The process is adjusted as necessary to maintain high-quality food standards.
A Starch Standby
Park 100 employees and chefs continually upgrade their science and technology skills by working with suppliers of quality ingredients. “We have a passion about ingredients,” says Alves. “We select only the best ones, and if there’s any chance of variability, then we ask the supplier to check the products before shipment and we inspect them after they arrive.” Some ingredients, such as starches from National Starch and Chemical Company, Bridgewater, N.J., have been used for the last 14 years and are consistent and effective.
National Starch’s wide variety of starches can be used in many applications, such as salad dressings, soups, stews, ice cream and other dairy foods. Starches help address problems such as moisture retention in baked goods, improve the crispiness of snacks, mimic fat, stabilize emulsions and introduce pulpiness in products.
National Starch's new NOVATION® 9260 and 9230 waxy maize-based starches recently received Quality Assurance International certification. These bland-tasting starches impart a smooth, short, heavy-bodied texture and do not set to a gel. 9260 can be used in retorted soups and gravies, and exhibits low to moderate tolerance to temperature and shear at neutral pH. 9230 does well in aseptic puddings, dips, sauces and salad dressings, and can withstand high temperatures, high shear, or low pH food processing systems. The company also offers a myriad of other starches to be used in all types of prepared foods.
For more information:
Joe Lombardi at 800-797-4992
National Starch and Chemical Write in 203