Phosphates in Beverage Applications

Phosphates for the food industry are manufactured to comply with Food Chemicals Codex specifications. As nutrients, sequestrants or multi-purpose food additives, a wide assortment of phosphates are considered GRAS, and their usage level is determined by GMPs. Potassium phosphates are on the “recommended for approval” GRAS status list. FDA allows the use of potassium ortho phosphates in the same food applications as sodium ortho phosphates, said Nadeen B. Myers, marketing technical services food phosphates specialist, ICL Performance Products LP, in a presentation titled, “Phosphates in Beverage Applications.”

Potassium is an essential mineral, and the Institute of Medicine recommended its Dietary Reference Intake to be increased by 35%, from 3,500mg per day to 4,700mg per day. FDA approves the use of “heart healthy” claims for products that meet the following criteria: 350mg potassium per serving, less than 140mg sodium per serving; and less than 3g fat, 1g saturated fat and 20mg cholesterol.

The benefits of phosphates are many and include flow conditioning, metal chelation, preservative enhancement and nutritional supplementation. In soy beverages, TSPP, SHMP, SKMP (a branded mixed cation polyphosphate with both potassium and sodium), DSP and DKP are used as stabilizing agents and to disperse soy proteins. TCP is both a calcium and phosphorus source. (See chart “Designating Phosphates“ for definition of acronyms.)

In meal replacement drinks, MCP, DCP and TCP are used for calcium and phosphorus sources, and DMP is a magnesium and phosphorous source. SHMP is used to stabilize proteins, while SHMP, SKMP, STPP, TSPP and STMP stabilize vitamin C.

Coffee systems use TSPP and SHMP for dairy-based foam stabilization, to obtain increased aeration and to inhibit weeping and drainage. DSP, DKP, SAPP/STPP buffer non-dairy creamers and improve protein stability, preventing syneresis. TSPP stabilizes and disperses soy-based coffee whiteners.

Dry-mix beverages use TCP as a flow conditioner and clouding agent in reconstituted beverages. The calcium and phosphorus contribute to the nutrient profiles. The common use rate for this application is 0.5-3.0%. Phosphoric acid (H3PO4) adds a sparkling bite and counteracts astringency of root beer and cola flavors. The low pH improves flavor and storage stability, and the chelation of troublesome metal ions help establish a stable carbonation. Usage levels for colas are 0.05% (0.01% in root beer).

Monocalcium phosphate monohydrate is an economical pH buffer to control tartness and a non-hygroscopic acidulant that can replace up to 50% of citric acid in a formula, with use levels of 0.5-1%.

In addition to the applications listed above, there are other miscellaneous uses for phosphates. MAP and DAP are used in the production of sparkling wine or as a nutrient for organisms in wine, beer or distilled spirits. Preventing metallic clouding of wine is achieved with the assistance of SHMP and STPP. The addition level is dependent upon heavy metal concentration. STMP stabilizes ascorbic acid against aqueous decomposition.

Innovation in the beverage industry has led to the use of SKMP to sequester metal cations, such as calcium, magnesium, copper and iron. SKMP is valuable to beverage manufacturers to increase shelflife, aid in color stabilization of fruit juice beverages, and stabilize dairy or soy protein and calcium.

SKMP is a unique product also known as glassy sodium potassium phosphate; sodium potassium polyphosphate, glassy; metaphosphoric acid; or sodium potassium salt. Its value in beverages is to reduce sodium up to 70% on a molar basis, enhance potassium, synergize with antimicrobials, solubilize calcium, modify protein and stabilize color.

“Phosphates in Beverage Applications,” Nadeen B. Myers, marketing technical services food phosphates specialist, ICL Performance Products LP,
--Summary by Elizabeth Mannie, Contributing Editor

Reports That Deliver

A successful business brief is important, because it is essentially the key communication point between a manufacturer and his flavor company and is intended to help achieve success with flavor solutions. When developing flavor solutions, a combination of expertise between the manufacturer and the flavor supplier is most helpful. When manufacturers provide information about their product, consumers, brand, positioning, processing, formulation, labeling, cost parameters and peripheral needs, then flavor suppliers can come up with the best solutions using their expertise.

Different types of reports fill different objectives. A “Market Insight/Innovation” brief fills a product development pipeline or a flavor pipeline; it also fulfills a request for strategic innovation, explores new markets or categories, and supplements a company’s market research. Key considerations are related strategies, timing, consumer targets, overall brand and product profile, related platforms, brands and sub-brands. Processes for establishing a development pipeline, knowledge gaps and resource needs are also considered in this document, said Barb Pugesek, marketing manager, FONA International Inc., during a speech titled, “Creating a Brief That Delivers.”

A “New Concepts Brief” identifies new product concepts or new flavor concepts for a specific product. Capabilities for line extensions are a part of the scope, considering how far ahead a company is looking, who the target consumer is, what geographic markets the product will be launched in and how it will be positioned; these are some of the questions answered in this communication.

In a “New Flavor Brief,” certain flavors are received for a specific development project. A library of a specific flavor category may be used for various development needs. Considerations are profile descriptors, flavor target, target consumer, geographic market, label and claims, functional ingredients, processing, restrictions, evaluation strategies, alternative mediums for screening, supporting information, flexibility for forms, solubility, labeling and cost, said Pugesek.

For product improvement, flavor modification based on profile, impact, regulatory, cost or usage changes, a “Flavor Modification Brief” would be beneficial. Matching existing products, solving an interruption to flavor supply or considering a change in suppliers is a good time for this information. Questions to be answered include reasons for flavor changes, changes in requirements, evaluation procedures or changes in formulation or processing.

Pugesek went on to note that a “Commercialization Brief” is for trial runs, further evaluation or consumer testing. To be considered are quantities, partners or affiliates, co-manufacturers, outside laboratories, scale-up requirements or any further documentation required.

The key elements of a brief include information on the scope, market brand, product technical specifications, flavor technical specifications and delivery. Some of the elements are not always known. Flavor suppliers provide expertise in flavor trends, consumer flavor preferences, delivery systems, functionality in finished foods, interactions, labeling, descriptors, cost and supplemental services.

The scope includes the overall objectives of the project, including the expected deliverables. It also discusses the timing or expected launch date, critical needs and factors by which success is measured. This would include speed, marketing support, sensory support and technical collaboration.

The market or brand information is contained in the next segment of the report. The target consumer is described, based on age, lifestyle, culture and whether it is a new or existing customer base. Geographic markets in which the product will launch, competitive products on the market, how the product will be positioned, in what channels and any product claims are mentioned here.

Technical flavor information to be listed includes labeling, flavor form and solubility, restrictions, parameters, cost, flash point and other specifications. Delivery information includes the date deliverables are required, sample quantity and flavor or prototypes. Also, the types of documents required for shipment or submission and any other requirements or instructions.

“Creating a Brief That Delivers,” Barb Pugesek, marketing manager, FONA International Inc.,
--Summary by Elizabeth Mannie, Contributing Editor

Maltodextrin as a Fiber for Beverages

Digestion-resistant maltodextrin (DRM) is made by the purposeful rearrangement of cornstarch converting a portion of the normal alpha 1,4 glucose linkages to random 1,2-; 1,3-; and 1,4-alpha and beta-linkages. The human digestive system effectively only digests alpha 1-4 linkages. Therefore, DRM resists digestion in the upper GI and is only partially fermented in the large intestine. Made by pyrolysis and controlled enzymatic hydrolysis of cornstarch, DRM is GRAS as “maltodextrin.” Refining, concentrating and drying results in DRM that is 90+% resistant to digestion and inherently ultra-low in “sugars.”

The definition for dietary fiber for nutrition labeling purposes is determined by the methods used to measure it. AOAC Official Method #2001.03, “Determination of Total Dietary Fiber in Foods Containing Resistant Maltodextrin,” effectively captures all indigestible constituents in foods to which DRM is added. AOAC 2001.03 is solely approved for use in foods and beverages containing DRM.

DRM is a free-flowing, fine white powder that is less than 10% as sweet as sugar (10 DE), odorless, tasteless and readily dispersible in water. Solutions are clear with low viscosity. DRM does not interfere with added flavors or colors, is stable to acid and heat, and is compatible in all respects with all processing conditions. DRM does not negatively influence the sensory properties of foods or beverages to which it is added. In many instances, it can improve sensory properties, said L. Steven Young, Ph.D., principal, Steven Young Worldwide, during a speech titled, “Digestion-resistant Maltodextrin as a Fiber Source for Beverages.”

DRM helps maintain healthy intestinal function by promoting the growth of beneficial intestinal microflora, yet does not cause intestinal distress due to excess acid or gas, says Young. Its ultra-low glycemic index (<5 compared to glucose at 100) helps maintain healthy postprandial blood glucose.

In beverage applications, DRM can be added to liquid or dry mixes and any still or carbonated beverage. DRM is further compatible with and stable to all beverage processes, such as retorting, hot-filling, pasteurizing and aseptic processing. It is easy to handle, readily dispersible and totally soluble. DRM can be added to beverages at any desirable use rate. At levels of <10g per serving, it qualifies beverages to be both “low-calorie” (<40 calories) and “sugar-free” (<0.5g). Lower usage rates, such as 6g (5.1g dietary fiber) per serving or 3g (2.6g dietary fiber) per serving, allow for “excellent” or “good” source of dietary fiber claims, respectively, while retaining “low-calorie” and “sugar-free” claims. With over 20 years of peer-reviewed research reported, various structure/function claims may also be available.

“Digestion-resistant Maltodextrin as a Fiber Source for Beverages,” L. Steven Young, Ph.D., principal, Steven Young Worldwide,
--Summary by Elizabeth Mannie, Contributing Editor

Formulating with Calcium Phosphate

In addition to building strong bones and teeth, calcium functions in the body to regulate the heartbeat, assist in proper thyroid function, blood clotting and nerve impulse transmission. Current FDA labeling requirements for calcium use the 1973 U.S. Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) amount of 1,000mg per day for ages four to adult. In 1980, it was suggested the RDA be increased to 1,200mg, but it was not adopted for nutrition labeling.

Calcium consumption is below recommended values in the U.S. as well as in Europe, said Amr Shaheed, technical service manager-beverage, Innophos, in a presentation titled, “Fortify Beverages Clearly Better with Calcium Phosphate.” Calcium deficiency occurs when calcium levels drop below 100mg/l, where calcium is then borrowed from the bones for other functions. It is returned to the bones from calcium supplied through the diet. But, when an individual’s diet is low in calcium, there may not be sufficient amounts of calcium available in the blood to be returned to the bones. This leads to a net loss in bone mass, a condition called osteopenia. Osteopenia can lead to osteoporosis or porous bone.

Calcium is not the only nutrient of importance for bone health. Phosphorus requirements largely have been ignored. Phosphorus is an essential mineral required by every cell in the body for normal function, said Shaheed. All of the phosphorus in the body is found as phosphate (PO4). Approximately 85% of the body’s phosphorus is found in bone. However, phospholipids are also major structural components of cell membranes.

While it may seem that people in the U.S. seldom suffer from phosphorus deficiencies, intake studies do show some problems. The total number of females with phosphorus intake below the RDA has declined since 1994, but 25% remain below RDA. More females in the prime bone-building years of 9-18 have a daily intake less than the RDA.

To build and rebuild bone, a balance of both calcium and phosphorus is required. According to research, calcium alone can hinder phosphorus absorption. Calcium phosphate promotes significant improvement in bone mineralization and bone strength, compared to calcium alone. Calcium supplements that do not contain phosphorus will not provide adequate help with osteoporosis, Shaheed adds.

However, typical calcium phosphates are insoluble and can have issues with clarity and sedimentation in beverages. To address this problem, a highly soluble monocalcium phosphate has been designed specifically for beverage applications. It features superior solubility, excellent clarity, no effect on color and provides both calcium and phosphorus. Additionally, it can be used to enrich clear beverages (such as apple juice) and colored or carbonated beverages without clouding. It is also a natural, kosher, halal and GRAS product.

“Fortify Beverages Clearly Better with Calcium Phosphate,” Amr Shaheed, technical service manager-beverage, Innophos,,
--Summary by Elizabeth Mannie, Contributing Editor

Whey Protein for Fortification

The $130 billion beverage market, together with the current protein fortification trend, leaves a wide-open opportunity for whey fortification in beverages. The bottled water market was $600 million in 2007, with key players being Nestle, Pepsi and Coke. Kellogg’s then came out with a twist on bottled water, K2O, a protein-enhanced water. Isotonics are seeing some $4 billion in sales, with Pepsi and Coke (Gatorade and Powerade, respectively) being the big players. Cadbury has now come out with a protein-enhanced isotonic, Accelerade. Juice drinks are $10 billion in size, with Coke, Pepsi, Kraft and Cadbury leading the way. Pepsi has enhanced a juice product with protein, resulting in the very well-known brand, Naked Juice, reported Starla Paulsen, applications department manager, Glanbia USA, in a presentation titled, “Fortifying Beverage Profits via Whey Protein Fortification.”

Functional beverage categories can be divided into three types, by pH level. Dairy beverages, meal replacements and sport supplements generally have a neutral pH of 6.0-7.0. Smoothies, yogurt-based beverages and rehydration beverages usually have a pH of about 3.5-4.2. Sports drinks, isotonics, juice-based beverages and protein waters generally have an acid pH of 2.7-3.5. Whey proteins from milk are available in concentrates, isolates and hydrolysates, all with varying compositions and functionality. The protein fractions in whey are mainly beta-lactoglobulin, alpha-lactalbumin, with small amounts of glycomacropeptide, bovine serum albumin, immunoglobulins and lactoferrin. Depending on the method of separation, there are different amounts of each protein, as well as fat, minerals and lactose, all affecting ingredient functionality and nutrition. The solubility and protein denaturation level also affect functionality.

Whey proteins can affect hydration, foaming, gelation, water-binding and product pH. Ingredient interactions can occur either during processing or shelflife of a beverage. For example, sodium ascorbate and whey protein isolate (WPI) can interact over time.

WPI acts to reduce astringency in acidic beverages and is a good foam former. Whey proteins have a large air-holding capacity when whipped. If there is too much shear, excessive foaming can occur, causing problems with the final product quality. Process control during filling can prevent foaming issues.

High-protein waters and sports beverages can maximize value with a specially formulated whey protein ingredient that produces less foaming than other whey proteins, contributes excellent flavor, reduces tartness and astringency, and may lower the formulation cost (due to reduced flavor usage).

Acidic beverages are typically hot- or ambient-filled or UHT-processed. The issues encountered with acid pH beverages include those with clarity, gelation, astringency and foaming. Whey protein isolate added to a beverage and processed at heat greater than 160ºF shows increased water-binding abilities. Even when the pH level is below 3.0, there is little change in WPI product functionality. Clarity issues can arise, but clarity increases as pH decreases.

A whey ingredient specially made for protein-fortified, high-acid and juice beverages enables a better-tasting beverage because of its unique blend formulated to reduce astringency. A 100% natural and bioavailable source of calcium derived from milk, this ingredient delivers the correct balance of macro and trace minerals for optimal bone growth and maintenance. It has been clinically proven to improve bone strength and reduce bone loss. 
Starla Paulsen, applications department manager, Glanbia USA,
--Summary by Elizabeth Mannie, Contributing Editor

Of Cats and Sweetness Perception

Stevia, a shrub, has garnered much attention this last year. Suppliers, food and beverage processors alike anticipate increased food use of the compounds found in stevia leaves, as various regulatory hurdles are overcome. Two glycosides found in stevia, stevioside and rebaudioside, give the plant its sweet taste. They join a crowded field of compounds used to sweeten food; compounds that differ in their tendency to trigger types of bitter sensations, perceived intensity over time and stability, as well as non-sensory attributes such as cost, availability, consumer and regulatory acceptance.

Sensory theory has long held that there are five different taste perceptions: salty, sour, sweet, bitter, and savory or “umami.” In simplified terms, the perception of sweetness is triggered by “G protein-coupled receptors” that act like molecular switches and are found on the tongue in many mammals. This receptor is formed from two tightly bound proteins, T1R2 and T1R3. When either protein is mutated or missing, sweetness perception is altered, or not perceived at all.

For example, members of theFelidaefamily, such as lions, tigers and the family cat, do not have a functional T1R2 protein and cannot taste sweetness1. Sweetness perception varies greatly between species and occasionally between individuals. Aspartame is not sweet to marmoset, howler, spider and other New World monkeys, but is to Old World monkeys and primates such as macaques and baboons.

Thousands of compounds of unrelated molecular structure can trigger a sweet sensation in humans. Sucrose, saccharin, dulcin and acesulfame-K; many aldehydes and ketones; amino acids such as alanine, glycine and serine; and proteins such as thaumatin and lysozyme are sweet. Sweetness does not constitute safety in that, for example, consumption of lead acetate, an inorganic compound with a sweet taste, causes lead poisoning.

Just as sweeteners vary in sensory and non-sensory characteristics, a formulator’s decision as to which one to use will be based on those attributes as
--Claudia D. O’Donnell, Chief Editor

1 Li, X, et al. 2005. Pseudogenization of a Sweet-Receptor Gene Accounts for Cats’ Indifference Toward Sugar.PLoS Genet. 1:27-35.