With government campaigns to promote healthy eating, and warnings of diet-related health risks, consumers are increasingly taking an interest in the labels on the foods they eat. An increased desire to avoid over-processed and artificial foods has promoted interest in clean and clear labels. However, making the right choice from the dizzying array of quality stamps and ingredients on the retail shelves can seem overwhelming. The challenge facing manufacturers, therefore, is to create easily understandable labels using recognizable and natural ingredients, while maintaining ease of processing and – most importantly – without compromising on flavor. Additionally, enhancing visual appeal has become a key focus in creating shareworthy products in a social media driven world.
Clean label as a lifestyle
According to research, 38 percent of European consumers regularly check the ingredients list on the products they buy, while 39 percent shun food and drinks containing artificial additives or preservatives. In the bakery segment, this translates to a trend towards artisan, handmade foods with an honest and understandable ingredient list that consumers can relate to. FrieslandCampina Kievit’s research shows that consumers across the globe nowadays have adopted clean label as trendy and a way of living, rather than consider it a policy. As recently as two years ago, ownership of the topic ‘clean label’ seemed to be reserved to nutritional specialists and corporations, with consumer participation being limited to reacting to news or corporate Facebook posts by ‘liking’ or ‘sharing’. Instagram influencers have made clean label look cool and accessible, and consumers have started to share their experiences; whether it is in the form of a new recipe or selfie with, for example, a clean label pretzel bun, the social media savvy public have started to embrace clean label as a lifestyle.
Buttering up to bakery trends
The current bakery market offers a larger than ever variety of indulgent treats to accommodate consumer demand, from an abundance of choice in product types to rising variety in textures and flavors. Butter applications have grown at a rate of 15 percent within the mature bakery market, addressing the need for indulgence, rich taste and a full mouthfeel as well as the desire for simple recognizable ingredients. From a home-style cookie to a tasty bagel, brioche or burger bun, butter-based fat powders allow for the natural labelling consumers expect, while at the same time creating exciting textures, enhancing the sensorial experience. These butter-based fat powders enable manufacturers to profit from the double-digit growth in the butter market.
Indulge in wellbeing
While scrutinizing product labels for recognizable natural ingredients and pursuing ‘good for you’ promises, consumers are not prepared to sacrifice the satisfying moment that comes from biting into a creamy light cake, a scrumptious muffin or a buttery cookie. Butter-based powders, such as FrieslandCampina Kievit’s Vana-Lata range, allow manufacturers to marry the demand for clean label transparency with the sensory properties that secure customer loyalty. Texture, mouthfeel, lightness and creaminess can all be manipulated to create a deluxe treat that leverages all the goodness of dairy – with zero e-numbers.
Extending shelf life
In recent years, scientific research has provided new nutritional insights. For example, dairy fats also provide essential components that enrich our daily food. This development has caused a shift in the appreciation of milk fat for both influencers and critical consumers. For manufacturers to expand in regions abroad, butter-based fat powders are a natural and logical solution. For many years, limited shelf life was holding manufacturers back from expansion in this promising area. However, extensive research by FrieslandCampina Kievit now makes it possible to expand butter bakery applications. FrieslandCampina Kievit took on the challenge of increasing shelf life without compromising on flavor by conducting a multidisciplinary study focusing on the stability of butter-based fat powders. The methodology took into consideration fat powder functionality, sensorial benefits, bakery applications and the climate conditions in regions where manufacturers have the possibility to grow. The results of this extensive study have allowed FrieslandCampina Kievit to increase the shelf life of butter-based fat powders while maintaining superior sensorial functionality.
Clean label indulgence is driving demand in the bakery segment. Consumers yearn for natural, home-style products with ingredients they recognize and trust on the label. Butter-based fat powders allow manufacturers to cater to the demand for premium quality products that deliver an intense butter taste and texture consumers like, while at the same time promising transparency on the labels. An extensive multidisciplinary study from FrieslandCampina Kievit has made shelf life extension of these powders possible, enabling manufacturers to fully profit from the double-digit growth in regions abroad.
Gea de Groot
Global Product Group Manager Food Ingredients