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- 12/21/2017

5 minutes interview with…FI Europe – second part

AgroFOOD Industry Hi Tech

Five minutes at FI Europe  with … 

From 28 to 30 November, the city of Frankfurt am Main was all about food ingredients. The 2017 edition of Food Ingredients Europe hosted more than 1500 companies spread among four halls of the Messe Frankfurt. As always, FiE was a key appointment to connect, make business, present new products and in general living the future of innovation in the food industry.
FiE 2017 was packed with innovation and a bright mood enlightened most participants. Innovations were everywhere, mostly centered around one concept: healthy and clean nutrition. As Ingredion states, “Ingredients which tap into the consumer demand for healthy, nutritious, clean label and gluten-free foods will be a priority in 2018.” or Roquette “We keep seeing increasing demand for free from/clean label products,” Which was a welcome challenge to many, for example DSMIt was really good news to discover that so many consumers want healthy products, since this is what we do best”. A challenge where science and hard data are more important than ever. LycoredOur mission is to work in a clinically responsible way.  That means we only promote what we can prove to workBarry Callebaut When we talk of health claims, they should be clinically proven, and this is not easy”.

Consumers, in particular, are living longer and longer -and want to age better and healthier. FonterraWe see that the biggest growth for prebiotics would be in healthy aging and medical nutrition. Healthy aging will be an immense market in China, given the size of the aging populationIndena Healthy Aging and its connection to brain health is of course one of our major focus”. Interventions range from prebiotics, as indicated by Olygose “Beyond 50 years old, people start to change their microbiota, and thus we need interventions to support a healthy microbiota as long as possible” to protein supplements, as again Fonterra notices “The main area of interest for whey protein is still sport nutrition but there is increasing interest in this ingredient in the areas of healthy aging and medical nutrition platforms”.

Indeed protein supplements are becoming bigger, as DMV FrieslandCampina told us, “the market is seeing an increase in demand for high quality and premium nutrition products, such as hydrolysed proteins […] With the increasing world population, rising welfare, and a greying population in many countries, the overall demand for protein is going to continue to increase for the years to come.””. Dairy protein supplements are still taking the lion’s share, thanks also to the growth of sport nutrition, which is not anymore a niche for professional athletes: again DMV FrieslandCampina “People also increasingly look to professional athletes for inspiration and are adopting their behaviours and training approaches including their nutrition regimes.” And we should not forget infants who need a specific protein intake. Domo’s Hyvital Whey EtD 120 for example is “the first complete range of ingredients for infant milk formulas, based on balanced whey proteins. It contains a superior level of essential amino acids, thereby making it possible to formulate on the lowest protein level as allowed by regulation. This helps our customers to achieve protein reduction in infant formula milk that is supported by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).”

But animal-based ingredients are increasingly challenged, and for example Roquette was quick to exploit “the rise of a flexitarian population and the growing demand for non-dairy or meat substitutes”, declaring that vegetable proten, in particular pea protein, has “clinically-proven benefits on muscle mass development, satiety & caloric intake”.
While customers want more protein, they want less and less unhealthy ingredients such as sugar and fats. Lots of players are now scrambling to bring to the market the best possible healthy replacements for these ingredient classes. As Barry Callebaut explained us, “Sugar is very high on the agenda for a lot of consumers. Almost half of consumers are trying to reduce their sugar intake, but they still look for an indulging experience” while IOI Loders Croklaan admits that “The reduction of saturated fat and calories is fundamental to healthier indulgence, the key consumer trend”. And the customers might be well right: Arla Foods Ingredients in fact knows that “The next big thing is blood sugar control. Blood sugar control is paramount, from a health point of view. Diseases related to hyperglycemia are the third global risk factor for premature mortality after hypertension and tobacco”. Some real examples during the show were given by Omya which presented cookies, “where 20% of sugar in the icing has been replaced by calcium carbonate, making the product healthier, adding also a technological benefit in reducing drying times, hygroscopicity and enhancing the opacity.

But perhaps the real emerging trend is that there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the problem of healthy nutrition. MonteloederThe classical approach is to develop one product for all consumers. This is not viable nowadays, both for consumers and for producers.” Therefore Indena is not alone in being “very fascinated by the concept of personalized nutrition”. Food and nutraceutical companies are thus entering the world of big data, either by digitalization, as again pioneered by MonteloederDigitalization is an approach that goes from cosmetics to food to even pharma; pharma companies have shown a lot of interest” or by consumer surveys, DSMWe want to be able to collect insights to work with manufacturers towards solutions”. The information age is thus finally entering the world of food, and we cannot wait to find what it will bring to the industry and to customers. Discover it with us, in the second issue of our FIE 2017 newsletter!

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