2015 – The Clean Year

2015 could be called The Clean Year.  The year we cleaned-up ingredient labels so consumers would know what each ingredient in our formulas is.  This could be called the year that everything became “more real” and less processed.  Perhaps consumers would celebrate how clean our labels are if they knew what they wanted in a “clean” labeled product.

According to Liz Sloan from Sloan Trends Inc., in her article titled, “Clean Label Rules, But Confusion Reigns,” 47% of consumers have never heard of the term “clean label” and 37% have heard of it but don’t know what it means.  Here at SPI we think it’s the word “clean.”  “Recognizable” “Natural” and “No Artificial” are the top three consumer clean label drivers.

Ultimately clean label is about avoiding chemicals.  Chemicals in food is the number one consumer food safety concern in 2015, up 13% from 2014.  8 in 10 consumers think preservative-free is healthy and 78% think no artificial sweeteners is healthy.

Interestingly, Sloan says that Organic, Natural, Non-GM, and Free-From are second-tier, peripheral attributes that are not driving consumers but may add to overall perception of “clean-ness.”

Consumers just want to know what’s in their food.  Did you know that 71% of consumers in all age categories think there are more harmful ingredients in foods than manufacturers are telling them?  This means they question us, the people making their food.  SPI Group stands by all of our ingredients and will always tell you everything in our products.  We may not be clean, but we promise to be transparent.

The full ELizabeth Sloan article is available in the members-only section at www.IFT.org.  It was published in the September issue of Food Technology.

Ohly Honey Powders: the versatile sweetener

Honey powders were developed to meet the needs of the food industry for a better way to store honey. Dried honey requires less storage space and stops the inherent waste and sanitation problems associated with liquid honey. It’s also a convenient way to store honey for prolonged periods of time to avoid crystallization of the liquid honey. Honey powder easily blends into dry mixes and little adjustment in product formulation needed.

Application for honey powders includes sweetening sauces, beverages, seasoning blends and in topical applications like coatings and glazes. Liquid honey is made up of glucose and fructose and about 20% water. The health food industry knows that glucose absorbs quickly while the fructose is absorbs slowly over time. This gives honey a low glycemic index and better at keeping blood sugar in balance.

Ohly uses two processes to manufacture their line of honey powders. In the spray dry process Ohly spray dries a liquid honey and maltodextrin carrier slurry via an evaporating tower. At the bottom of the tower they end up with a dry cream colored powder that is approximately 32% honey solids and 68% maltodextrin. To achieve the same amount of honey solids to liquid honey you need to add 2.5 parts spray dried honey powder to .5 parts water. With the additional maltodextrin solids and depending upon your application, you may need to adjust the amount of water.

In the roller dried process Ohly mixes the liquid honey with wheat starch, the carrier chosen for this line of honey powders. They plate the thick slurry onto a heated roller where the product dries and the wheat starch pre-gelatinizes in the process. The roller dried products can come out at up to 70% honey solids and 30% wheat starch. By adding 1 part water to 1 part honey powder the roller dried honey powder is on a 1 to 1 basis to liquid honey.

The honey solids in the spray dried products are lower than the roller dried ones are. But because of the maltodextrin carrier, the honey flavor has an immediate burst of honey as the maltodextrin is so clean. The spray dried powders are also completely soluble in water.

In roller dried products where wheat starch is used as the carrier, a masking effect may happen on an immediate honey flavor. But when used in the right applications the honey flavor and sweetness is released. So these products tend to work best in baking, sauces and glazes where the product has been heated or cooked.

Ohly has a complete line of honey powders to choose from. Depending on the functionality needed, they have that will work in your application. They also manufacture non-GMO versions in both roller dried and spray dried forms.

The following Ohly honey powders are available through SPI Group.

Spray dried: Honey HSD 50 and Honey HSD 50 in IP form.

Roller dried: Honey HRD 40 and HI Honey HRD 70 in IP form.

Please contact us today if you would like to look at a spec, order a sample or just have a question.