Rather Be Blue

Wild blueberries (different than the cultivated variety in terms of nutritional benefits, flavor and size) are continuing to earn national recognition for their many health benefits. Most recently, wild blueberries have been named to the “Top 10 Superfoods for Women” list in the current issue of Health magazine. Specific health benefits highlighted include improving motor skills, preventing memory loss, lowering blood pressure and fighting wrinkles. In addition, the frozen version of wild blueberries is different than any other frozen fruit, in that it retains all of the nutritional elements and flavor/texture of the fresh version, and wild blueberries are available year-round. Wild Blueberry Association of North America, www.wildblueberries.com

“Pep” Talk
Some manufacturers are looking for safe alternatives to traditional ground black pepper, due to some recent Salmonella concerns in salami. Kalsec®, a leading manufacturer of spice and herb oleoresins, provides a range of black pepper oleoresins and Aquaresins® (water-dispersible) that are ideal alternatives to ground black pepper. Known for their consistently superior microbiological quality, Kalsec’s black and white pepper oleoresins and Aquaresins are formulated to replicate the same proportions of pungency and aroma that occur in good-quality, ground black pepper, says the company. Kalsec Inc., www.kalsec.com

Fresh Meat
One product is reported to enhance the overall savory notes of protein and reduce the warmed-over flavor found in pre-cooked meats. Wixon Inc. has expanded its Wix-Fresh line to include Wix-Fresh™ OatMax, a flavor modifier that extends the shelflife of meat and poultry products, while promoting moisture and flavor retention. A proprietary blend of all-natural, oat-derived ingredient technology, Wix-Fresh OatMax adds the benefits of fiber and increases mouthfeel, while simultaneously increasing moisture retention up to 15 times that of the OatMax inclusion rate of up to 1.5%, allowing for greater yields in a variety of meat applications, says the company. For a complimentary sample, contact Wixon at 414-769-3000, 414-769-3024 (fax) or e-mail Samples@wixon.com. Wixon Inc., www.wixon.com

Not Just a Bowl of Cherries 
Adding delicious, freeze-dried cherries can make food products sweet and complete. Van Drunen Farms’ Freeze-dried Cherries remove concerns about availability or shelflife, as freeze-drying removes the moisture from the fruit, while preserving the natural flavor, color and nutritional value. In this convenient form, they are easy to use, economical and reconstitute immediately. Additionally, this cherry product is sourced in the U.S. and EU, allowing for year-round availability. They are available in a wide variety of sizes, including whole, sliced, diced and powder forms. Van Drunen Farms, 815-472-3100, www.vandrunenfarms.com

Crunchy Advantage
One company claims to have the ideal system for sugar and sugar alcohol syrups used in confectionery coating and hard panning. TIC Gums’ TicaPAN™ Quick Crunch is “an advantageous alternative to gum Arabic, because it provides harder and crunchier shells,” according to the company. TicaPAN Quick Crunch is derived from locally available materials, eliminating the ongoing concern for dependable supplies from Africa and ensuring a more stable cost. Product advantages include ease of hydration and processing, plus ease to pan and a smooth finish. A non-GMO grade is available, as well as a cold water-soluble version, and it meets sugar-free FDA guidelines and other regulatory standards. TIC Gums, 800-899-3953, www.ticgums.com/quickcrunch

Well in Hand
Consumers everywhere are eating on-the-go, and handheld foods continue to show major growth. The challenge for food developers is to create foods that do not fall apart or drip when eaten and deliver great taste and texture through freeze/thaw and microwave cooking. Advanced Food Systems has developed several ingredients that improve the cohesion, texture and taste in such hand-held foods. The AFS Actobind® line offers several solutions. Actobind 3900 binds water in products, such as egg rolls and filled crepes, preventing the stuffing from “blowing out” during cooking and eating. Actobind 3924 provides freeze/thaw and emulsion stability in fillings, while Actobind EPS improves tortilla texture and machinability in taquitos. Advanced Food Systems Inc., 800-787-3067, www.afsnj.com

GRAS Notes
One corporation has received formal notification of GRAS status for two of its products. Burcon NutraScience Corporation’s cruciferin-rich canola protein isolate Puratein® and Burcon’s napin-rich canola protein isolate Supertein™ are Generally Recognized as Safe for their intended use as an ingredient in a variety of food and beverage applications, and, in addition, both substances are exempt from pre-market approval requirements of the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. The notification contains a listing of eight GRAS-use categories for the incorporation of the products into foods. Burcon NutraScience Corporation, 888-408-7960, www.burcon.ca

Resistant Wheat Starch Study
A study published in the online Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism found one resistant wheat starch to be effective in developing food products with a lower glycemic and insulin response. Fibersym® RW, a resistant wheat starch belonging to the RS4 classification and produced by MGP Ingredients Inc., was part of the study, which consisted of 13 adults who were fed two nutritional bars, as well as a control glucose drink, after a 12-hour overnight fast. Puffed wheat was formulated in a bar, and Fibersym RW was incorporated in a second nutritional bar by totally replacing puffed wheat in the formula, while all the other ingredients were kept identical. The two bar samples and the glucose drink each delivered 50g of available carbohydrates. Blood glucose and insulin levels were monitored over a two-hour period, after the samples were consumed. In addition, the Fibersym RW was found to significantly attenuate the glycemic and insulinemic responses, even when high-glycemic ingredients, such as brown sugar and corn syrup, represented 31% of the nutritional bar formula. (Haub, MD, et al. 2010. Different Types of Resistant Starch Elicit Different Glucose Responses in Humans. J. Nutrition and Metabolism. Vol. 2010, Article ID 230501, doi:10.1155/2010/230501) MGP Ingredients, 866-547-2122, www.mgpingredients.com

Soy Advancements
A new, very low-viscosity soy protein isolate has recently been launched. Solbar Industries Ltd.’s Solpro 842, a 90% soy protein, is processed uniquely to meet the demands for soy crisps, extruded snacks and cereals. The soy protein isolate has consistently low viscosity, when subjected to the heat and shear of extrusion, while maintaining a bland flavor profile. Solbar is utilizing advanced hydrolysis technology to produce additional new soy isolate proteins for the beverage and protein bar markets, satisfying customers’ needs for high-protein soy ingredients with low flavor profiles and improved functionality, says the company. Solbar Industries Ltd., Israel, +97288632111, www.solbar.com

Isn’t it Grande?
Functional whey protein is healthy and stably-priced, and it is emerging as a healthy ingredient alternative for food manufacturers. Grändé Custom Ingredients produces a functional whey protein product line called Grande Bravo®, which the company says reduces costs by replacing higher-cost ingredients; binds water with or without heat; decreases syneresis and purge; increases creaminess; reduces fat and increases protein; improves shelflife and yield; and replaces stabilizers and emulsifiers. In addition, it is heat-, acid- and freeze/thaw-stable with a clean, mild flavor and no off-taste. Labeling claims include: 100% natural, certified USPH Grade A and kosher, and EU- and USDA-compliant. Grändé Custom Ingredients Group, 800-772-3210, cgig@grande.com

International Flavor
An international trading company is introducing a line of specialty products. MARATA Specialties LLC has made a strategic alliance with several companies to include this line, which includes Dehydrated Specialty Chilies, Gourmet Smoked Sea Salt (for use in snacks, meats, salad dressings and soups) and Smoked Black Peppercorns & Oregano. This alliance gives MARATA the capability to offer a wide variety of presentations, such as whole, diced, granules and powder chilies, plus whole-leaf, Greek-cut and powder Mexican oregano. MARATA Specialties LLC, 915-309-5937, www.marataonline.com

Rising to Meet Needs
One bakers’ yeast is a natural source of vitamin D. Lallemand Bakers’ Yeast is a response to the increasing scientific studies regarding the benefits of vitamin D. The patent-pending process converts the plant sterols in the yeast to vitamin D, while allowing the yeast to keep its leavening and flavor contributions intact. Their North American plants are equipped so all yeasts (fresh cream, fresh compressed and instant dried yeast) are now produced using this process. Baked goods leavened with the yeasts are now naturally richer in vitamin D content, at no extra cost to the baker, the company claims. Lallemand Inc., www.lallemand.com

Perfect Protein
Today, consumers are increasingly aware of the benefits of nutritionally enhanced foods and beverages. Peptan™ Hydrolysed Collagen, from Rousselot, helps provide the functional and nutraceutical activity to create innovative products. Peptan are Type 1 hydrolyzed collagens, the same collagen as that found in human bones and skin. Peptan is a high-purity, natural bioactive product containing more than 97% protein (on a dry-weight basis), supplied in a form that can be easily used and digested by the human body, says the company. Manufactured using a gentle enzymatic process, it is easily incorporated into foods and beverages, is non-allergenic, free from side effects, highly bioavailable, and fat- and carbohydrate-free. It is also natural, GRAS, and manufactured according to HACCP and ISO standards, the company claims. Rousselot, a VION company, The Netherlands, www.rousselot.com

Sunny Side Up
One award-winning, patented dietary ingredient has been developed specifically to combat stress. Suntheanine®, from Taiyo, contains L-theanine, which is reported to create an alert, yet totally relaxed state of mind without drowsiness, says the company. It is clinically proven to reduce stress, improve the quality of sleep, diminish normal symptoms of PMS, heighten mental acuity and reduce negative side-effects of caffeine. L-theanine has been shown to support the immune system. Rehydrating with one of the many recently released L-theanine-containing beverages, such as all-natural Zenmaster, VitaminWater b-Relax or LifeWater Enlighten, is a  great way to help the immune system bounce back, says the company. Taiyo International, www.suntheanine.com

Optimum Quality and Performance
Be the one who provides consumers with the healthy alternatives they seek. Bergstrom Nutrition, the exclusive manufacturer of OptiMSM®, is constantly looking for the best new ingredients for their customers. Using decades of experience, they identify and qualify ingredients health-oriented consumers are seeking. Only those that pass the rigorous standards of quality and purity are offered, giving the customer confidence. Products include OptiMSM K-Blend, two forms of vitamin K in one; and SunActive® Iron combined with OptiMSM, for athletic recovery and iron-dependent physical and cognitive performance. Bergstrom Nutrition, www.bergstromnutrition.com

Prepared Foods’ electronic newsletter, E-dition, continues to provide original information on a variety of subjects for product developers. The following articles were highlights for an issue:
* “Defining Dietary Fiber,” by Sakharam Patil, Ph.D., was presented in the January 18, 2010, issue. See http://bit.ly/4s4TT2  for a discussion on sources, descriptions and benefits of various dietary fibers.
* “How Sweet it Is,” by Claudia Dziuk O’Donnell, MSc, MBA, was presented in the January 4, 2010, E-dition. See http://bit.ly/bun58E for a discussion of benefits of natural sweeteners, including sucrose, and sweetener alternatives that can be used by formulators. Also, statistics on demographic groups that may benefit from reduced-calorie sweeteners.
* “Advancing Omega-3s,” by Claudia Dziuk O’Donnell, MSc, MBA, appeared in the February 1, 2010, issue of E-dition. See http://bit.ly/cLpw2Z for a brief update on omega-3s, along with international trends in their use.

To subscribe to ,I>E-dition, go to www.PreparedFoods.com/enews. To see past archived issues of E-dition,/I>, go to http://bit.ly/bIROdO or type in “Prepared Foods’ E-dition,/I> Archives” at PreparedFoods.com search field.

For daily industry news updates, see the homepage of www.PreparedFoods.com and www.NutraSolutions.com.
* Frutarom Ltd. appointed Salvatore Gargano as general manager of its health business unit.
* Flavor & Fragrance Specialties (FFS) added Stephen Graeme as senior account executive.
* Briess Malt & Ingredients Co. received a U.S. Department of Energy award for achieving significant energy reductions.
* The World Tea Expo will be held June 11-13, at the Las Vegas Convention Center. For more information, visit worldteaexpo.com.
* Glanbia Nutritionals unveiled a new website, TruCalMilkCalcium.com, to promote the opportunities for new product development with calcium.
* Bioplus Life Sciences formed a strategic exclusive North American marketing and distribution alliance with Mays Chemical Company.
* Nikken Foods USA Inc. is moving to a new location at 4984 Manchester Ave., St. Louis.
* Twin River Technologies Natural Ingredients announced a name change to FINA LLC.
* 2010 marks the 15-year anniversary of PAT Vitamins.
* Sargento Foods Inc. announced a pair of personnel changes: Kristi Jankowski is now senior vice president of innovation, while Rod Hogan is now vice president of new business development.
* As part of a Danisco reorganization, John Breeden will assume the new role of vice president, NAFTA, for the company’s Enablers Division, which handles hydrocolloids, stabilizer systems and emulsifiers.
* Premium Ingredients expanded its Aroma Chemical & Essential Oil offering. Premium Ingredients is dedicated to becoming a key global supplier to the flavor and fragrance industry. 
* Farmland Foods announced it is the first pork company to receive the USDA designation “Never Ever 3” for its Simply Natural line of fresh pork products.
* Wisdom Natural Brands named Charles Marble to the position of chief operating officer.
* Gary Brenner announced the creation of his new company, Brenner pharma/food Business Development Ltd., in Israel.
* MGP Ingredients Inc. announced its manufacturing site in Atchison, Kan., passed recent surveillance audits, as a part of the company’s International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001:2004 and Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series (OHSAS) 18001:2007 certifications.