Innovation and Taste Going Strong at 2008 IFT Expo

The heat and humidity of the Big Easy could not wilt the innovation of the annual food technology show.

By Dave Fusaro and Diane Toops

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With a new corporate chef in the kitchen, Kraft Food Ingredients’ booth was lively.

Kraft Food Ingredients unveiled Savory Edge, a beef enhancer that delivers juicy meat, even rare notes in any beef application. It’s an allergen-free, natural flavor built on a multi-phase reaction process of oil, water, air and other “enablers.” The addition to KFIC’s Flavors of Cooking line also can offset warmed-over and “livery-grassy” notes in lower grades of beef.

Just in time for the show, Tate & Lyle added soluble corn fiber to its Promitor branded dietary fiber line. The new version was featured in numerous applications: a fruit shot, a smoked chipotle hummus and even soft-serve ice cream. Promitor’s original resistant starch was the base for a black bean chip. Several items were sweetened with the company’s groundbreaking Splenda brand of sucralose.

Since sucralose is no longer protected by a patent, a number of other suppliers also offered it in their booths, including: Niutang Chemical, a Chinese company with U.S. base in Brea, Calif., and two suppliers in the Chinese pavilion.

LDL (bad) cholesterol is a major risk factor in cardiovascular disease. Austin, Minn.-based Hormel Specialty Products’ Eterna tasteless, odorless omega-3 fish oil is rich in eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and its high oxidative stability leads to a longer shelf live. Successful applications include whole wheat bread, oatmeal raisin cookies and bars, yogurt, retorted products and drinks.


There was a significant China pavilion at this year’s show, as there has been for several years. The representative from the Sub-Council of Light Industry said there is no anxiety over Chinese ingredients.

Speaking of omega-3s, Farbest Brands, Montvale, N.J., and BioGin Biochemicals of Chengdu, China formed an alliance to market BioGin’s range of omega-3 fatty acid products. Made from blends of fish and flax seed oil, the products are available in both oil forms and encapsulated powders, in North America. In its booth, Farbest showed non-GMO pea protein, which is easily digested and suitable for protein-enriched products from infant formulas to sports nutrition. A meal in itself, Farbest’s Pecan Praline Nutrition Bar featured FarMax 785 Pea Protein Isolate, 290 Calcium Caseinate, Nutrition Bar Vitamin & Mineral Premix, Xylitol and Polydextrose.

To offset escalating ingredient costs, St. Louis-based Solae Co. markets Supro Max structured proteins, which can be combined with lower-cost meat and poultry to enhance the taste of new products. Solae proved it with Mini Barbecue Vegetarian Beef Sandwiches in a tangy BBQ sauce on a mini roll.

Briess Malt & Ingredients Co., Chilton, Wis., passed out delicious Organic Tapioca Caramels, formulated with BriesSweet Tapioca Syrup as a 1:1 substitute for corn syrup. They contain organic sugar, organic cream and organic vanilla. The natural sweetener is available in conventional form as well.

Grain Processing Corp., Muscatine, Iowa, showcased a baked snack made with TrueBran corn bran and made from 100 percent yellow corn, which enhances the fiber in snacks, cereals, baked goods, nutrition bars and other fiber-fortified foods.

The Itasca, Ill.-based ADM/Matsutani Fibersol-2 team brought some of this year’s popular retail products to IFT to showcase its ingredients, including Soyjoy nutrition bars and Welch’s 100% Grape Juice with Fiber. Both contain Fibersol-2, a soluble dietary fiber made from ground whole soybeans, which is readily dispersible and tasteless. Suitable for beverages, including sports drinks and fortified waters, processed foods, baked goods, dairy products, dietetic foods, fiber supplements, and functional foods, Fibersol-2 has impressive characteristics, including acid and heat stability, low viscosity, clear solution, high solubility, easily digestible for any age and it’s a prebiotic.

GTC Nutrition, Golden, Colo., made it simple for attendees walking around all day to keep their bones strong and digestive systems in shape with Bone Health Chocolate Syrup. The syrup is enriched with Aquamin calcified mineral source and NutraFlora prebiotic fiber, which supports bone, digestive and immune health, and Digestive Health Caramel Syrup enriched with NutraFlora prebiotic fiber and BioAgave agave active fiber.

Osteoporosis affects 75 million people in Europe, Japan and the U.S. Leon Schurgers, senior researcher at the University of Maastricht, The Netherlands, was at the booth of Morristown, N.J.-based PL Thomas to explain the latest research on the benefits of vitamin K-2 as Menaquinone-7, essential for good bone and cardiovascular health. Most children and adults are vitamin K (which stands for “koagulation’) deficient, as Western diets only provide enough for coagulation. Thus substantial fractions of the K-dependent protein osteocalcin, which utilizes calcium in the bone, and Maxtrix GLA-protein, an inhibitor of vascular calcification, are not activated. This is especially true for children, who have high levels of inactive osteocalcin — the protein necessary for bone growth. Without enough K vitamins, calcium settles in the arteries where it cannot be utilized in the bone tissue.

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