Special Report

Sugar reduced solutions in abundance at FiE 2017

11 Dec 2017 --- Sugar reduction was the focus for many exhibitors at this year's Food ingredients Europe 2017 (FiE), even in indulgent applications, such as chocolate and desserts. With 2018 set to be a big year for sugar reduction and with sugar taxes coming into effect in Ireland and the UK, many ingredients suppliers are looking to innovate even further in the space of sugar reduction.

Moments do matter: Breakfast behaviors and the growth of snacking

05 Dec 2017 --- Different moments require different foods. Consumers ask themselves “Do I need an on-the-go yogurt for a busy morning at work?”, “What do I need to buy for a relaxing brunch at home with the family?” and “What shall I eat and drink after my workout?” Exploring trends related to the where, when and how of eating and drinking can help companies position their products in the right type of occasion to capitalize on consumer questions like these. 

Plant-based milks: (Part 2) Dairy-free and vegan claims drive NPD

30 Nov 2017 --- Developments in plant-based foods are seeing increased demand from those who do not want to commit to a full vegan or even vegetarian lifestyle but would rather pick and choose to suit their lifestyle, social life or health conditions. Lu Ann Williams, Director of Innovation at Innova Market Insights told FoodIngredientsFirst: “The category has been further boosted by the growing availability and promotion of plant-based options to traditional dairy lines, particularly beverages, but also cultured products such as yogurt, frozen desserts and ice cream, creamers and cheese.”

Plant-based milks: (Part 1) A multi-billion dollar market

27 Nov 2017 --- The global market for dairy alternative drinks is expected to reach US$16.3bn in 2018, up dramatically from US$7.4bn in 2010. Significant developments in this area include the acquisition of WhiteWave in 2016, presenting Danone with the opportunity to further developing its interests in this dynamic market in both North America and Europe. 

Fi Europe 2017: Reduction & Reformulation Innovation Awards – the nominees

16 Nov 2017 --- The Fi Europe Innovation Awards honors professionals and companies for their ability to demonstrate and stimulate innovation, and for their contribution to the industry. With Fi Europe 2017 fast approaching, FoodIngredientsFirst takes a closer look at some of the award nominees for the Reduction & Reformulation Innovation Award. This award gives recognition to an organization or company that has developed the best solution (natural or synthetic) within the last two years for reducing salt, sugar or fat whilst maintaining flavor, texture and functionality of the ingredient replaced.

Inside “artisan” and “slow” food consumer appeal

13 Nov 2017 --- 2017 continues to witness a real explosion of artisanal alternatives as food and beverage manufacturers tap into trends like provenance, locally-sourced, handmade, authentically-made and so on. New product developments in the beverages, bakery, snacking and confectionery segments are using artisanal claims – but what does “artisan” on the label really mean? And why does it appeal to consumers? 

Natural and authentic taste solutions: (Part 2) Challenges in citrus supply

09 Nov 2017 --- Back in September, and in less than twenty-four hours, Hurricane Irma winds ripped through a promising Florida citrus crop taking as much as 75 percent of the fruit from the trees.  Florida is the world's second-largest orange juice producer, behind Brazil and Florida's citrus industry was already struggling with declining production because of citrus greening, an incurable disease spread by an insect that impairs trees' circulation and nutrition.

Natural and authentic taste solutions: (Part 1) Citrus flavors dominate beverage space

06 Nov 2017 --- Citrus is a perennial top flavor choice for beverages and offer a more diverse range of taste tones than almost any other fruit category. No other taste enjoys greater acceptance in the beverage industry and is consistently one of the most popular flavors for sweet food products. The citrus taste is a favorite in nearly all countries around the globe.

Functional carbohydrate quality matters: innovators eye “good” vs. “bad” differentiation

30 Oct 2017 --- Attitudes towards conventional carbohydrates have, and continue to, change as healthy nutrition plays a bigger part in the busy lifestyles of today’s consumers. And companies realize that the quality of carbohydrates actually do matter to consumers as people often differentiate between the different carbohydrate types, even if it’s to break them down into simply “good” versus “bad.”

Sugar coating sugar reduction: Finding the balance in the dairy space

23 Oct 2017 --- One of the most striking international phenomena in recent years is how consumer attitudes have changed towards sugar. In the food and drink industry, reducing sugar content, using alternative sweeteners and being more health conscious are top priorities in today’s consumer trends. Late last year, Innova Market Insights tipped “Sweeter Balance” as the top three trends for 2017 and even later in the year, sugar reduction is still on the tip of the tongue.

Superfoods: (Part 2) What will be next in well-being? The “superior” food of tomorrow

19 Oct 2017 --- Strengthening supply chains
A few years back quinoa production centered around traditional Andean growing regions like Peru, Bolivia and Chile, but now the superfood grain is commercially grown all over Europe including, Britain, Germany, Belgium, France, Spain and the Netherlands as its popularity continues to gather pace in consumer groups all over the world. Commercial farming is also being developed in Kenya and India. 

Superfoods: (Part 1) The evolution of nutrient-rich food for health-conscious consumers

17 Oct 2017 --- Superfoods can be classified as foods that are superior in terms of their nutritional value or nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. Even small portions of some superfoods can supply an abundance of vitamins, minerals, proteins, antioxidants and more. Many superfoods contain extraordinary characteristics that can have a variety of health benefits from boosting immunity, treating illness/disease, reducing blood pressure, cutting sugar intake, lowering cholesterol and more.

The snack factor: (Part 2) Popcorn sales pop as snack hailed authentic and guilt-free

12 Oct 2017 --- Popcorn is one of the smaller snacks sub-categories but one that has seen consistent growth in recent years, mainly as a result of the promotion of ready-to-eat popcorn as a convenient, tasty and better-for-you snack option, suitable for in-home consumption, particularly sharing social occasions, and for on-the-go snacks, as well as its more traditional popularity at cinemas and sporting events.

The snack factor: (Part 1) Nuts and seeds driving NPD in savory category

09 Oct 2017 --- Not only did new product activity in the snacks market continue to forge ahead in 2016 and the first part of 2017, but the growth rate actually increased slightly. Innova Market Insights recorded a rise of 10 percent in overall global launch numbers in the 12 months to the end of May 2017, upon a still impressive near-9 percent in the previous 12-month period. The category, as defined by Innova Market Insights, includes not only traditional savory or salty snacks and snack nuts & seeds, but also products such as meat snacks, popcorn and fruit-based snacks, as well as finger foods and hors-d'oeuvres.

Mayo 2.0: Health trend embraced as vegan NPD accelerates

02 Oct 2017 --- In Europe, the mayonnaise market is seeing Heinz challenge Unilever’s market-leading Hellmann’s brand in the UK with the 2016 launch of Heinz (Seriously) Good Mayonnaise, which replaced the previous Heinz mayo. It is packaged in an urn-shaped jar with a premium positioning and saw strong promotional activity following its introduction. Within six months, it was in the top 10 UK table sauce brands, having gained sales of nearly £6m (US$8m), although it remained well behind Hellmann’s Real Mayonnaise in second place with £63m (US$84.2m) and Hellmann’s Light Mayonnaise in third place with £31m (US$41.4m).

Sustainable cocoa farming – the supplier response: Cargill & Barry Callebaut

27 Sep 2017 --- As environmental groups, media organizations and of course the all-important consumer pays closer attention to the issue of cocoa farming, where the ingredients for chocolate come from and exactly how cocoa is sourced, the issue is in the spotlight right now. FoodIngredientsFirst investigates cocoa sourcing across the industry. You can read the first part of this report here

Sustainable cocoa farming – the supplier response: Olam

25 Sep 2017 --- Following on from the controversies that were recently highlighted in an investigation into so-called “dirty cocoa” beans, FoodIngredientsFirst examines how the major players are working towards a sustainable supply chain. There may be many unanswered questions, but what we do know is that the industry is working hard to improve the sustainability of cocoa farming on all levels. 

Vanilla enjoys an innovation resurgence, but supply chain challenges mount

18 Sep 2017 --- The adjective “vanilla” may have unexciting connotations, but it could be argued that the world of products with vanilla flavoring is currently very exciting indeed. Even though supply challenges are being faced in sourcing natural vanilla, new and innovative products continue to be introduced to the market at an exhilarating pace.

New opportunities in star-shaped vegetables

14 Sep 2017 --- Back in August, FoodIngredientsFirst reported on Tesco revamping its fruit and veg aisles in a bid to include popular carbohydrate substitutes and vegetable-based meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. As part of the retailer’s commitment to clamping down on food waste in its stores and supply chain, Tesco is revamping the fresh produce aisles – traditionally a place where shoppers purely bought their fruit and vegetables.

New fruit applications: UK supermarket on a flavor mission

11 Sep 2017 --- UK supermarket, Asda, are on a mission to increase fruit consumption, by launching new varieties of candy flavored fruits and not just children – sweet-toothed Brits up are going wild for candy flavored fruit. Asda is currently going through an innovative phase of fruit growing where growers able to naturally develop different varieties and bring something new and interesting for Asda customers to try.

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