Health and nature are becoming the focus of attention, and reducing sugar has become the top priority. How to reduce the sugar content while maintaining the natural and clean label and rich taste? Soluble fiber and natural flavors are driving the development of the sweetener industry, bringing a healthy aura to low sugar foods and improving their taste, texture and sweetness.
Because of the multiple functions of sugar in food, whether artificial sweeteners or natural sweeteners are used to replace sugar, enterprises must face multiple challenges. Sugar in beverages has additional functions, not only to increase sweetness, but also to have volume and flavor, which can help reduce or balance acidity and enhance the flavor of natural fruits. " Jane Whittaker, DuPont's chief application expert, points out. Therefore, in addition to sweetness, several other aspects must be considered, such as texture, flavor and how the ingredient is conveyed to consumers on the label.
1. Advantages of fiber as a sugar substitute
Fiber is an excellent alternative to sugar or to reduce sugar addition. Marjan nouwens roest, technical sales support manager of sensus, said that in addition to providing sweetness, inulin fiber can replicate the function of sugar and be used as flavor enhancer, leavening agent or increment agent. "The sweetness of natural inulin is about 10% of sucrose. If the inulin chain is short, the sweetness will increase. Short chain inulin, especially chicory fructooligosaccharides, can provide 60% of sucrose sweetness level. Because of its wide range of functions, this soluble dietary fiber can replace sugar in a ratio of 1:1 in many applications
Another fiber known to reduce sugar is gum arabic. "Because of its physical and functional properties, it is a good choice to increase the fiber content of food without damaging the appearance or flavor of food." Dr. Isabelle jaouen, research and development director of allAnd & Robert, said. As a low viscosity thickener, gum arabic can help make up for the lost volume, texture and taste of sugar reducing products, bring stability by reducing water activity, and improve softness and taste by increasing water holding capacity.
Litesse ultra modified polyglucose is another kind of soluble fiber, which can also completely replace sugar to make up for the lost texture and taste. It has "excellent stability" in beverages.
According to a sensus consumer survey, the vast majority of European consumers (84%) believe that fiber intake is essential for intestinal and digestive health, and two-thirds of Europeans are trying to get enough fiber every day. "But on average, the actual intake in Europe is 18 to 24 grams per day for men and 16 to 20 grams per day for women. No European country has reached the recommended dietary fiber daily intake. " The continuous shortage of fiber intake is also one of the reasons for the trend of high fiber food in 2020.
Inulin and fructooligosaccharide extracted from chicory root can enrich fiber content in food application, promote digestion health and narrow fiber gap. In addition, chicory root fiber, as a prebiotic, can stimulate the production of beneficial bacteria in the colon and reduce the rise of blood glucose. Arabic gum also has a strong prebiotic effect and excellent digestion performance. With its excellent intestinal tolerance, it can ensure comfortable digestion.
Bastien berepion, technical support manager for nexira, said nexira's gum arabic fiber is suitable for a low FODMAP diet and can be consumed in large quantities (50 grams per day) without discomfort.
2. How to optimize the overall flavor after reducing sugar?
Products with less sugar need to adjust their overall flavor. "Taste regulation under sweet taste includes optimizing overall taste characteristics, masking or reducing adverse aroma and taste effects, which covers product applications such as beverages, dairy products and desserts, and even cooking applications such as ketchup and ready to eat foods." Regine lueghausen, vice president of global marketing flavor at symrise, said.
"When sweet ingredients such as honey, maple or caramel are reduced, the aroma intensity of food and beverage will be reduced, and the product will be considered to have poor taste. But by using flavoring, you can keep the taste delicious and natural without adding extra calories. " "These natural flavors enhance the taste of other ingredients in the product," explains K é VIN bangratz, a marketing researcher at Prova
Yeast ingredients can be used in salty or sweet products to enhance the flavor of classic ingredients such as eggs, vanilla and chocolate, and help reduce the sugar content in the formula. They can also subtly show the flavor of baking, malt, cocoa or grain, and reduce the sugar content by up to 30%. Yeast extract and natural flavor are solutions for cleaning label and reducing sugar. Their working principle is to increase users' perception of flavor, improve taste, make food more attractive, and make food enterprises reduce sugar without affecting original flavor. " Biorigin tried to use roasted yeast extract, natural flavor, or a combination of the two to reduce sugar, and achieved good results, and reduced sugar by 25-30% in condiments, beverages and other sweet food applications.
3. Sugar reduction trend: flavor enhancement after sugar reduction with dietary fiber and natural flavor
Stevioside is a natural sugar reducing component, which has been widely concerned in the past decades. However, it is limited because the most abundant molecule in stevioside leaves has bitter taste.
Sweegen, a new generation of Stevia produced by biotransformation technology, can transform REB a into REB m, REB D and REB e by combining with enzymes. It has a fresher taste and can be used without any masking agent. This stevioside can be used as a "natural flavor" in the formula to enhance the sweetness of the sugar while reducing the sugar content by 30% to 40%. It can also be used to mask the odor of other components, such as cannabinol and tetrahydrocannabinol.
Symrise's taste balance solution will conceal functions and flavor enhancements and pre tune blending. Its SymLife toolbox can optimize the flavor and taste of the product, provide a fuller taste and a juicy feel.
Kerry's tastesense flavor conditioning technology provides sugar reducing solutions in the form of natural flavor agents. The role of the technology is to achieve the desired sweetness of the product, while masking acidity and astringency, and improving the taste.
Nexira uses Arabic gum to solve the taste problem of Stevia and can be used in energy drinks. Combined with sweeteners, gum arabic can improve texture and taste masking agent.
Biospringer launched Springer mask 101, a natural solution produced by fermentation to neutralize the bad taste of sweeteners such as aspartame, acesulfame or Stevia. Springer mask 101 acts as a bitter blocker even at very low doses and has proven to mask bitterness, metal odors and aftertaste. "
Sensus frutafit inulin and fructooligosaccharides can also be used in combination with other sweeteners to mask the bad taste and transform the taste characteristics of sweeteners into "sucrose characteristics".