19/03/2018 – News / Naturalness / Anuga FoodTec / Germany
Functional ingredients under the spotlight at Anuga Foodtec
‘Naturalness’ has become a decisive buying factor on the supermarket shelves – a trend that is reflected in the growing demand for natural aromas, colouring foodstuffs, and health & nutrition ingredients. From Tuesday to Friday this week (20-23 March 2018), Anuga FoodTec in Cologne will showcase the numerous options that exist for granulating, coating, encapsulating, agglomerating and instantising such functional ingredients.
The premier global trade fair for the food & beverage industry has created a dedicated product segment for food ingredients, while the theme will feature prominently across the wide-ranging event and congress programme, organised by DLG.
Whether to disguise the taste and smell, or as protection against moisture, acid or oxidation, fluid bed granulation is one of the state-of-the-art methods implemented when it comes to customising functional ingredients. To this end, liquids with a high solid content are sprayed onto the fluid bed via a jet system. In interplay with controllable temperatures of 30–130ºC, an intensive heat and material exchange enables a uniform drying process without thermal damage. In this way, the nutritional characteristics of aromas or vitamins remain intact within the foodstuffs beyond the minimum shelf life. In addition to colouring agents, plant extracts and aromas, milk or whey-based protein concentrates are also produced. The powders derived from such a process excel because of their optimum flow behaviour and easy dosing attributes. There is no need for additional carriers or additives – and the list of ingredients that have to be declared remains short for the product developers.
Modern fluid bed systems like those to be displayed at Anuga FoodTec next week combine drying, granulation and coating in one work process – and moreover, they achieve that process in a small space. The same applies for the ploughshare mixers, which generate a mechanical fluid bed – one in which the solids content, grain size and residual moisture can be set precisely.
Aromas and vitamins out of the capsule
However, the multifunctional systems are capable of doing even more than just producing agglomerates with optimum solubility – they are able to integrate vitamins, minerals and fruit aromas into a stable matrix. A micro-metre-thin layer composed of maltodextrin and starch efficiently protects the ingredients that are sensitive to oxidation against outer influences such as light and oxygen – the special feature being that the microcapsules do not release their embedded contents until the food is eaten. A prime example for this is the encapsulation of natrium chloride in a fine shell made of fat. The coated grains of salt form concentrated salt spots in food. And the effect – the spots set stronger signals in the tasting receptors and are perceived more intensely. This enables the salt in bakery and frozen products such as pizza to be reduced by up to 20 per cent without having an effect on the taste experience.
Engineering expertise meets contract manufacturing
The engineering specialists of exhibiting companies at the upcoming Anuga FoodTec not only plan and set up fluid bed apparatus and entire systems, but together with the food manufacturers actually develop the entire process through to the tailor-made product. The scale-up to production scale then occurs on-site using a pilot system. The continually increasing capacities in the contract manufacturing section – a service that is offered by several system builders via affiliated production companies – demonstrates that the demand for such functional ingredients is high.
Food ingredients at Anuga FoodTec
Worldwide there is a great deal of movement on the market for food ingredients, given the strengthening trend towards naturalness. As such, there exists the opportunity for food and beverage manufacturers to win over new groups of consumers – provided they recognise the signs of the times and pick up on innovative ingredients. Their significance at the Cologne fair grounds next week will be underlined by the new ‘Meeting Point – Food Ingredients’, which presents the suppliers of ingredients on a connected presentation display area.
The congress and event programme of Anuga FoodTec will also focus on ingredients, with leading experts granting an insight into the latest developments in the scope of interesting lectures and presentations. In this way, the ‘Food Ingredients’ Forum from Tuesday 20th through to Friday 23rd will be dedicated to current themes such as clean labels, personalised diets, texture design and enzymes in food production, as well as the product reformulation possibilities for exchanging and reducing sugar, salt and fat.
For more information on the event, visit: www.anugafoodtec.com