Late last year, TIC Gums and Ingredion entered into an agreement to offer the widest range of texture capabilities, superior formulation expertise and rapid response to customer needs. Since then, TIC Gums has been on their own journey to diversify their range of ingredient profiles so that they can provide solutions that match up with customers’ concerns.
Customers escalate demand for transparency
Karen Silagyi, Product Manager at TIC Gums about trends in the hydrocolloid industry: “A trend that we continue to see is the consumer demand for clean label products. We are focused on collaborating with our customers to understand their individual needs for products and formulating according to their own clean label standards.”
“In addition to clean label trends, many consumers are concerned with not just what’s on the label, but the story behind the product. Consumers want to know where their food is coming from and where the ingredients are produced.”
According to Silagyi, these demands stem from a larger request from the consumer: transparency from manufacturers. Consumers are looking for products that are honest about their ingredients, and they are becoming loyal to brands that make labels claims that align with their lifestyle, for instance, “clean label” or “produced in the USA.”
TIC Gums answers to consumer transparency and flavor demands
TIC Gums introduced two hydrocolloid solutions that address clean label demands, flavor and nutritional expectations and FSMA compliance regulation concerns at SupplySide West 2017, last month: GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000 and Ticaloid Ultrasmooth CL.
Flavor boosting stabilizer: GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000
Food developers often use guar gum to prevent ice crystal formation in frozen treats, to thicken and add mouthfeel in sauces and dressings or to prevent runny instant oatmeal.
Unfortunately for formulators, standard guar gum can interfere with the sensory characteristics of foods with more delicate flavors. Also speaking Lauren Schleicher, TIC Gums Food Scientist, who said: “Challenges present themselves when the manufacturer is developing a clean label product. Because some commonly accepted clean label ingredients are derived from natural agricultural sources, they have a tendency to carry a grassy, earthy smell and a beany, green flavor, such as in the case of guar. When a customer is developing a very delicately flavored sauce using guar gum as a clean label stabilizer it can be tricky to mask the natural grassy/beany flavor in guar gum.”
Schleicher continued: “To combat this particular challenge, TIC Gums developed the GuarNT USA line that removes the earthy, grassy flavor components of typical guar gum. GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000 is flavorless and odorless, so the desired flavors in the finished product can shine through. This grade still has the label declaration of guar gum, so it remains very label friendly.”
With its clean flavor profile, GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000 can be used in a myriad of applications at usage levels that were not previously possible. Of samples containing GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000, sensory panelists discovered the following:
• Butter shortbread cookies displayed a more prevalent and distinguishable butter flavor
• Vanilla ice cream presented a higher level of vanilla flavor and aroma
• Plain oatmeal exhibited a more apparent oat flavor
Furthermore, because GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000 is manufactured in the USA, typical FSMA regulations concerning guar are alleviated.
Clean label blend: Ticaloid Ultrasmooth CL
As health and wellness trends continue to penetrate the instant beverage category, product developers are challenged with creating innovative, clean-label beverages that maximize nutritional value without negatively impacting sensory attributes. Fortified instant beverages have an increased amount of perceivable particulates due to the addition of vitamin-mineral blends, fiber, protein and other nutritional ingredients. Ticaloid Ultrasmooth CL from TIC Gums is a hydrocolloid system that enhances texture and suspension in instant protein beverage applications. This cold water soluble system dissolves easily into solution, allowing consumers to experience the textural benefits.
When tested, an instant chocolate protein beverage featuring Ticaloid Ultrasmooth CL:
• Masked the awareness of particulates in a way other gums alone did not, avoiding an undesirable, gritty mouthfeel
• Dispersed in liquid more easily than the alternative samples, and featured the highest hydration rate. This ensures the beverage hydrates quickly and remains at a consistent viscosity so it can be consumed immediately or over a longer period of time
Why are gums necessary?
Gums are essential to creating the desired texture in stability in many of our favorite foods. “For instance, in a dairy-based condiment or sauce, consumers expect a viscous product that clings to leafy greens, vegetables, and other foods while still coating the mouth. A vinaigrette-style sauce should be thinner but still able to cling to other foods and coat the mouth,” notes Silagyi.
“Choosing the correct hydrocolloid or hydrocolloid blend can be a difficult process as there are many factors that need to be taken into account,” explains Schleicher. “TIC Gums has food scientists that specialize in hydrocolloids and formulators are encouraged to engage with our Gum Gurus to discuss their specific applications. TIC Gums promotes collaborations with our Gum Gurus to define which stabilization requirements are necessary and what textural attributes are desired.”
“While many of our products do not help extend the shelf life from a microbial perspective, gums can help with separation in sauces, dressings and condiments – which ultimately helps enhance consumer acceptability over time. Oftentimes a product’s shelf life is determined by the consumer based on its physical qualities, or appearance, ahead of product safety defects. This is to say that when a product’s appearance begins to deteriorate, it is generally before the product is unsafe to eat. By using hydrocolloids to add texture to different applications, the appearance of a food can be enhanced, ultimately extending the shelf life until there is a true quality defect,” she finalizes.