Most formulators and nutritionists realize that soy protein provides many functional and nutritional benefits in foods. These benefits include providing better yields and moist texture in processed meats and protein-based satiety when added to beverages or nutrition bars. However, in all cases, when added to prepared foods or nutritional products, soy is considered a definite allergen as it is listed as one for the 8 top allergens found in foods as follows:
- Tree Nuts
All of us are concerned about the labeling and health concerns of having an unwanted allergen in our product. But here are some facts which might help us to re-consider soy protein use:
- The largest survey conducted found only 0.0005 percent of adults are allergic to soy protein.1
Cow’s milk allergy is about 40 times more common than soy allergy.1
- The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology estimates that only 0.4 percent of children are allergic to soy protein. Of those, an estimated 70 percent will outgrow their allergy by age 10.2
When designing a prepared food or nutritional food for adults, it is vital to weigh whether our soy protein use or rejection is based on allergen labellling dictates or remote risk concerns about allergenic effects of soy protein products.
- Savage, J.H., et al. “The natural history of soy allergy.” J Allergy Clin Immunol, 2010. 125(3): p. 683-686.
- Vierk, K.A., et al. “Prevalence of self-reported food allergy in American adults and use of food labels.” J Allergy Clin Immunol, 2007. 119(6): p. 1504-10.
We hope you had the opportunity to attend at least one of the premier events SCIFTs put on in Anaheim, CA this March. This was the 30th anniversary of these events and it was one of the best. The Conference held the first half of the day was a wealth of information on topics of interest for the busy Food Industry professional. Highlights included the esteemed Elizabeth Sloan, PhD of Sloan Trends, giving a ‘sneak peek’ of her market insights on 2017-2018 food trends. Look for her full report to be published in IFT’s Food Technology magazine soon.
Other speakers and subjects included: insights from Debra Topham, MS, CNS, CFS on managing the new nutrition label changes set in place in 2016, Katie Wagner, founder of Katie Wagner Social Media, on how food industry professionals can harness the power of social media to engage our audience, build credibility and get our message out, Dr. Ash Husain discussed scientific advancements in sterilization processes for food safety, and we heard from Dan Solis, MHA FDA with updates on regulations and processes in food import and exports. Overall, it was very informative day.
In addition to the knowledge and expertise of the speakers, 5 student teams from Southern California Universities participated in the annual Student Product Development Competition. The teams utilized the conference theme: New World, New Tools to present their ideas to the panel of judges.
And last, but certainly not least – the day was capped off with the SCIFTs Suppliers’ Night hosted in the ballroom of the Disneyland Hotel. The event was sold out – vendors, customers, and students were able to meet with manufacturers and distributors of a wide variety of ingredients. The evening was capped off with a complimentary hors’ de oeuvre reception. If you did not attend, we encourage you to put next year’s event on your calendar – March 7, 2018.