NEW Non-GMO Project verified ProDry ingredients

SPI Group and Ohly Americas is pleased to announce our new NON GMO Project Verified PRODRY products.  “GMO-free” is one of the top five claims US shoppers seek when purchasing foods.  Non-GMO claims are found in a variety of product categories including snacks, bakery, dairy, drinks, soups and seasonings.

Ohly Americas has launched this line of products to demonstrate their commitment to transparency with manufacturers and consumers.  The Non GMO Project Verified line includes:

  • Cayenne Pepper Sauce Powder
  • Dijon Mustard Powder
  • Salad Mustard Powder
  • White Distilled Vinegar Powder
  • Honey Powder

The key benefits of our PRODRY product line are their great flavor in an easy to use powder form.  Heat and complex flavors are consistent batch to batch.  Easy to measure powders vs difficult liquids or pastes creates less waste, and our long shelf life creates flexibility in your supply chain.

Contact your SPI Group sales representative for more information.

Prebiotic Fiber in maintaining the health of gut bacteria

Prebiotics are soluble fiber compounds that pass undigested through the upper part of the gastrointestinal tract and stimulate the growth of microorganisms that colonize the lower intestinal tract. Although indigestible in humans they create an environment that is optimal for probiotic bacteria to grow on, acting as a kind of substrate fertilizer for the microflora. When consumed, prebiotic fibers are fermented in the large intestine by the bacteria that live there. The fermentation produces byproducts in the form of small chain fatty acids that the good bacteria feed on to grow and proliferate. Not only does the prebiotic fiber strengthen and significantly increase the good bacteria. It helps suppress the disease causing bacteria, promoting an optimal environment for good digestive health.

They have found that bacteria that call the colon home are incredibly important to wellness. The healthy microflora that live there help digest food, strengthen the bowel wall, improve mineral absorption, boost immunity to viruses and aid in regulation of hormone production.

In some ways probiotics are unnecessary for healthy individuals who consistently ingest prebiotics. For this reason eating foods rich in prebiotics are better than taking probiotics for most people. In research and clinical studies many people find that prebiotics gives them satiety by making them feel fuller, faster. Therefore people trying to maintain a healthy weight or loss weight should take or eat prebiotics with their meals.

According to the Institute of Medicine it is recommended that female adults 50 years and younger should consume 25 grams of fiber and men 38 grams of fiber daily. Over 50 years old, women should consume 21 grams and men 30 grams of fiber daily. While there is no broad consensus on the ideal daily serving of soluble prebiotic fiber in this dietary fiber total. Recommendations typically range from 4 to 8 grams of this to be in prebiotic form to support digestive health.

The difference between the two fibers is, Insoluble fiber isn’t broken down by the gut and absorbed into the bloodstream. It adds bulk to waste in the digestive system, which helps keep you regular and prevent constipation.

Soluble prebiotic fiber is soft and sticky, and absorbs water to form a gel-like substance inside the digestive system. Soluble fiber helps soften stool so it can slide through the GI tract more easily. It also binds to substances like cholesterol and sugar, preventing or slowing their absorption into the blood. That’s why it’s known to help regulate blood sugar levels, and protect against heart disease by lowering blood cholesterol. This is in addition to feeding the microflora that live in the lower digestive tract.

The top ten foods containing prebiotics in dry form are. Gum Arabic 85%, Chicory root 64.6%, Jerusalem artichoke 31.5%, Dandelion greens 24.3%, Garlic 17.5%, Leek 11.7%, Onion 8.6%, Asparagus 5%, Wheat bran 5% and Whole Wheat flour cooked at 4.8%. Many other foods contain prebiotic fiber as well including Bananas, Apple skins, Beans and even Honey.

SPI Group carries several prebiotic fibers including an organic inulin from Intrinsic made from Jerusalem artichoke and another inulin from Beneo called Orafti GR made from chicory root. We also have one from DuPont called Litesse Ultra made from polydextrose.

Please contact your local SPI representative for specification sheets and a sample. Or call our office at 510-351-8012.

Research and Development Tax Credit

SPI Group recently attended a meat conference at Texas A&M and one of the speakers talked about R&D Tax Incentives for food companies that do R&D/Product development.

Many companies in the food manufacturing and processing industries are unaware that the government offers generous research & development incentive programs. Even those that are aware often fail to capture the full extent of R&D tax credits.

If your company has introduced product line extensions or modified product formulations then the tax credit applies. While the R&D Tax credit has been part of the tax code for decades, it only became permanent in December 2015 with the passage of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act. The permanency of the credit will provide your company greater certainty and the ability to count on its savings in their annual planning.

Examples of Food Science innovations eligible for the R&D tax incentives include the following:

  • Develop recipe formulations for new food products and flavorings
  • Improve existing food product formulations to extend product shelf life
  • Develop new or improved agricultural or chemical materials that go into food


  • Improve existing food products to enhance sensory qualities
  • Improve existing food products to achieve nutritional requirements
  •  Improve existing formulations to achieve analytical requirements
  •  Develop new production processing techniques
  •  Develop new packaging designs
  •  Produce prototypes products for testing and validation
  •  Conducting sensory evaluations


Natural and Clean – Research for Understanding Consumers

SPI Group is committed to helping our customers meet consumers’ needs, as we all know, one of the most popular trends is clean(er) labels and natural.  Except that clean and natural have no definition.  DuPont Nutrition and Health spent the last year researching what consumers mean when they say they want clean and natural.

  • 57% of adults are making an effort to avoid packaged food and beverages with chemical or artificial ingredients
  • 58% say the avoidance is due to concerns about negative impacts on their health
  • Of 1200 US consumers, 53% ALWAYS read labels on a first time purchase and 20% ALMOST ALWAYS

Except, 46% say they are confused by nutrition facts panels!

So, half of consumers want to avoid certain ingredients and half of consumers read labels except they don’t know what the labels mean.  In other words, they want to read labels and make certain choices but don’t know how.

Here are a few comments regarding specific ingredients:

  • 56% of consumers think “Chicory root fiber” is natural, 14% think “Inulin” is natural
  • 63% of consumer think “protein from soy” is natural, 36% think “soy protein isolate” is natural
  • 54% of consumer think “rice starch” is natural, 13% think “modified corn starch” is natural

And finally, who is willing to pay for all of this?  Consumers who want to change their health and live a good life, are willing to pay up to 10% more for natural and clean foods.  Those interested in taste and weight management are not.  In our sample size of over 10,000 adults, the second group composed more than half of the sample.

Want to know more about this primary customer data that can help you create a clean label strategy?  Call your SPI Group account manager today to set up an appointment

True “Uncured” Labeled Meats

Celery juice powder is used in many natural uncured sausages and deli meats, with packaging that declares ”A natural source of nitrates”. In fact, celery juice powder is a source of concentrated nitrite!

SPI Group and Wenda Ingredients offer another option for natural meats:  use Spice and Fruit Extracts from Prosur.  Prosur T-10 plus works in a different way to preserve the cure color but is not a concentrated source of nitrite.  Using T-10 plus can help eliminate chemical nitrite, as well as cherry and celery juice powders.  It creates “cured” color and flavor and improves shelf life.   Additionally, changing from celery juice powder to T-10 plus allows for faster processing (no overnight holding).

If you want more information about moving away from celery juice powder and moving towards ProSur T-10 plus fruit and spice extract; contact SPI Group today! 

DATEM Replacement in baked goods

Our friends at MGP Ingredients were recently featured by Bakerpedia!

The featured ingredient in this article is Arise® 8100:  a functional wheat protein isolate.  It affects the rheology or machinability of doughs and exhibits enhanced extensibility properties that decreases mixing time and improves loaf volume of bread and other yeast-leavened products. As an added bonus;  Arise 8100 is Non-GMO Project verified!

Check out the Bakerpedia feature and contact your SPI Group representative for more information or a sample today!


Plant-based 90% Protein Nuggets

SPI Group just returned from the Supply Side West show, where we were excited to introduce our customers to some exciting new ingredients: plant-based 90% Protein Nuggets from DuPont Nutrition and Health. 

The new SUPRO® 90 percent protein nuggets are unique not only for their high level of protein, but also because they are label friendly. We like these nuggets as an effective way to add protein to a formula but also to add crunchy texture.  The new shapes allow for easy use in snacks, cereals , granola items, and nutrition bars – and more!

Contact us for more information and to see these new 90% protein nuggets for yourself!


Meticulous Process Ensures Integrity

2017 marks the 20th anniversary since establishment of DuPont Solae’s Protein Solutions’ IP Non-GM Program.  Our IP Non-GM Soy Proteins were the first soy proteins to be Non GMO Project Verified due to our detailed farm-to-customer program in place to manage our supply of IP Non-GM Soy Proteins and assure its integrity.   Through a complex system of segregation and testing we can say our IP Non-GM is a model for others to follow.

To commemorate this occasion we have this video to help demonstrate our long time commitment to delivering what customers seek: honest transparency in where our products come from and how we make sure to deliver at and above your expectations.

Asian Noodle Technology Course held at the Wheat Marketing Center, Portland

The Wheat Marketing Center together with the Food Innovations Center held another excellent advanced course on the manufacturing of dried Asian style noodles. Asian style noodles are popular all over the world for their convenience, low price and the long shelf life they provide the end use consumer. Asian noodles are packed in plastic cups or formed in a square and wrapped in plastic. Many countries lack refrigeration for foods that need to be used in a few days or weeks. Asian noodles are perfect for all climate conditions and easy to prepare and serve.

This class has taught many hundreds of people from all over the world on the science in making a good quality dried noodle. The course was held in the Old Alber’s Mill along the Willamette river waterfront near downtown Portland and ran the entire week of August 7th. This time the course was held for a group of food industry people from Nigeria which included people from the milling and baking industry.

The Wheat Marketing Center holds other short courses on many other products that also use the NW soft wheat that is grown exclusively in the NW region of the US. Soft winter wheat is lower in protein than the hard winter wheat variety that is used in bread type doughs. Higher gluten is desired for good cell structure and strength, lower gluten level is desirable for making flat breads, cakes, cookies and Asian style noodles.

The course includes in depth sessions on using phosphates, wheat protein isolates, resistant starches and hydrocolloid as ingredients in making high quality dried Asian style noodles. They included a session on making the seasoning that goes into the individual serving packets for each package. The seasoning blend in the packets is key in making the product taste and smell desirable in every country that produces them. No matter the flavors they choose they have to decide on how to enhance those flavors.

In the seasoning session we told the students how their flavor enhancing chemist tool belt included Salt, Glutamic acid in the form of MSG or Yeast Extracts as well as Nucleotides and Peptides. The proof of the performance of the yeast extracts, was when we showed the students the three demo’s I’d prepared. I used the Provesta 349, poultry enhancing yeast extract in a chicken broth, the Provesta 347 extract in a beef broth and the Provesta 512 extract in a vegetable broth.

At .025% we showed them how much a little bit of the yeast extracts can affect the seasonings flavor and have an overall umami effect on the broth. All agreed the broth was much fuller and flavorful using the yeast extracts. They finished the week making their own dried Asian Noodle product and all were going to use the samples of Ohly yeast extracts that I left for them.

The Ohly yeast extracts and other products work in all varieties of food products. If you’re working on a food product that needs some extra flavor enhancement or to bring out certain flavor notes.

Please get in touch with your local SPI Group representative and ask for an Ohly product list and demonstration on how they would work in your product.

The Positive Economic Value of Soy Protein in Prepared and Nutritional Foods

Many times we are asked, “Why should we use soy proteins in their processed food products and blended protein beverage and bar solutions?”  One of the very best reason is price stability over the long term.

In recent years, we have seen the prices of WPC/WPI and Caseinates/MPCs soar

above their  historical average prices by 50 to 60% .   All these milk based proteins are subject to global and domestic effects on the producing country’s supply and demand for fluid milk for retail dairy products including fluid milk and cheese as well as conversion into butter and skim milk powder or caseinates/milk protein concentrate powders. In addition, strong demand for Whey proteins have resulted in long leadtimes and short supply while dairy companies try to balance out their cheese production against this demand. Although present prices appear stable, milk-based proteins remain volatile to any supply versus demand imbalance.

In contrast, isolated soy protein (90% protein) and soy protein concentrates (65% protein) are very price stable. The prices for isolated soy proteins has remained stable only increasing due to subtle soy crop-related changes, capital improvement,energy,labor and transportation and inflation while at the same time improving in flavor, quality and improved functionality. (Over the past three decades, the average cost of domestically produced soy isolates has increased only 2.5% per year.)

A primary reason for this price stability is that 85% of world’s soybean production is crushed into soybean oil and meal. Of the meal,98% is converted into animal feed and only 2% is further processed into soy flour and proteins. With a bountiful supply of raw material, soy protein shortages and price spikes are rare.

As we develop the nutritious foods of the future and consider the positive nutritional and physiological value of blended proteins, let us recall the most price stable of all: Soy protein.