February 2006 Ingredient Round-Up - Colors

These coloring agents may be visible, but the technology behind them is far from self-evident. This showcase highlights what's new under the sun.

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Organic caramel color

A new organic caramel color is a response to consumer trends and the resulting ingredient demand from food and beverage manufacturers. Caramel color, manufactured from the controlled heat treatment of carbohydrates, is the world's most widely consumed (by weight) food color. And now they're organic: both sucrose-based Caramel Color and Caramelized Rice Syrup. Processors using either product can label "organic caramel color" on ingredient declarations in the U.S.

D.D. Williamson; Louisville, Ky.
502-895-2438; www.ddwmson.com



Non-GMO sugar caramel

An expanded range of sugar caramel colors are produced with no sulfite reactants and are GMO-free. These Class I (plain) caramel colors feature a higher (redder) Hue Index and thus deliver deeper yellow to rich golden tones. Flavor profile is very mild but tinctorial power is in the 0.130-0.150 range.

Sethness Caramel Color; Chicago
888-772-1880; www.sethness.com



Red and healthy

The FDA recently approved as safe the use of LycoMato tomato lycopene extract as a color additive in foods. Bright red LycoMato, a standardized tomato oleoresin, contains a high concentration of the phytochemicals lycopene — partially dissolved and mostly dispersed in tomato oil — and phytoene, phytofluene, carotene, tocopherols and phytosterols. Lycopene has been shown to help prevent several forms of cancer, especially prostate cancer.

LycoRed; La Crosse, Wis.
608-783-0872; www.lycored.com



Brown molasses

Light or dark, wet or dry, Premium Blend Molasses can be used in foods that require a medium dark brown color and robust sugar-like molasses flavor. The molasses are made from cane sugar.

Domino Specialty Ingredients; Baltimore, Md.
800-446-9763; www.dominospecialtyingredients.com



Inkjet your message

While not a color per se, Digital Food Imaging is a fun new feature teaming the vendor's colors with a Spectra Technology inkjet system. The result is four-color images on food products. The colors are FDA-approved and Kosher-certified, and the resulting food products are highly differentiated. This is the technology behind the trivia questions on Pringles Prints potato crisps.

Sensient Colors; St. Louis
800-325-8110; www.sensient-tech.com

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