Author Archives: CFER News

Author: CFER News

CFER is the Centre for Food Education and Research, expert in the development of new food and drink products, optimization of recipes for food businesses and companies and also a strong innovation centre in technological foods and drinks.

CFER Labs has collaborated with Why Not Soda on the technical development of their first flavour, Lemon’Mate. We had the chance to interview Nils Schwentkowsi (NS), the company co-founder and business manager, and ask him some questions about the company’s vision, business model and, also, his feedback about the collaboration with CFER Labs.

CFER: So the market for craft sodas in Germany is well established, but in Portugal you found that was a big gap. Can you tell us a little bit more how “why not soda” started and how consumers presently perceive the brand?

NS: I saw the soft drink market in Germany changing massively during the last 20 years. Until I went to university there were only the big brands like Coca Cola and Pepsi, but then one, two, three alternative producers appeared on the market with more sophisticated ways of production, with more interesting flavors or just more interesting stories to tell. And now the shelves in regular supermarkets are full of different options. My wife and I we both became soda-fans, because the soda had less and less sugar and became more and more natural with new, interesting flavors.

We have been in Portugal many times before we moved here. We love the country, its people, its nature. But one thing we were missing and we could not find: There were no real alternative sodas on the market. Only these artificial ones full of sugar. So we decided: why not make better sodas here in Portugal – interesting flavors with only natural ingredients, less sugar, bio-certified. And so we did. We left our career, quit our secure jobs and told our friends that we would move to Portugal with our two little daughters to become soda producers without even speaking the language. You can imagine that most of them stared at us saying: why? Well, you know our answer: why not! We believe that one should constantly look for new experiences. They do not necessarily have to be as life-changing as ours. But new experiences make you grow personally and make you feel alive. This is also what we want to transport with our brand and our story.

So, we had a slight feeling how to start without having any experience in this sector. We developed the recipe for our first flavor in the kitchen and then went to professionals to help us to have the right recipe for production. We found suppliers and very important a place to bottle here in Portugal, the fantastic guys from Cerveja Vadia. In June 2018 we produced our first batch, in August already the second. The feedback we received was super positive. Customers loved the refreshing and natural taste and the fact that it had less sugar.

In the end of 2018 we won a StartUp-Accelerator by Startup Lisbon and since then we are constantly growing in numbers of clients and sales. We won clients from the Algarve to the north and were listed in Go Natural as well as Continentes Innovation Food Lab. During the Startup Programm we also met the CEO of Delta Cafes, Rui Miguel Nabeiro. He liked our spirit, speed and most importantly the product. So we decided to run a sales trial in 2019. And now we started working together on a regular basis and they will start to distribute our products. We feel very just very honored to experience all of this – and of course motivated to keep on going. We will launch two more flavors in March and will start a whole family of Craft Soda, which we plan to constantly grow over the next years.

CFER: How do you feel the craft soda market will evolve over the next years both in Portugal as in Europe?

NS: Customers are looking for more “better-for-you-options”. They are more conscious about what they consume, but not in an extremist way. They still want to enjoy their lives. And we can also see a tendency towards the identification with local brands. Experience is what consumers are looking for in new products – especially the younger Generations. We deliver the right product for these demands. We use only natural, high quality ingredients, lower sugar and of course bio-certified. We produce in Portugal and we give fruits that everyone know and interesting twist in flavor for new taste experiences.

In northern Europe craft soda or alternative soft drinks are already a big thing and we are the first ones to bring this trend to Portugal. Well, the big player will always play a dominant role, but there is room for smaller producers to position themselves on the market. But most importantly, besides all market potential, for us it is just a lot of fun to develop, produce and sell soda. It is a product with a good spirit. We love it.

The brand has started with a single refreshing flavour, Lemon’Mate, which is made with bio-certified, high quality ingredients. in marketeer.sapo.pt

CFER: As a research and innovation company, CFER is helping brands like Why Not reaching the market with even more innovative foods and beverages, while supporting their technical development. Could you describe us the importance of CFER as a technical partner during your trajectory up so far?

NS: As said before, we had help of professionals to make our ideas and recipes ready for production, because making soda in the kitchen is not the same as producing millions of bottles. Of course we are not there yet, but soon, of course. When we arrived here in Portugal we needed someone here, we could challenge our new ideas with, do adjustments to existing recipes, try new ingredients from new suppliers our just talk about questions of production processes. Craft soda making is constant work in progress, because you have to come up with new ideas and make your business better and better. So, we were looking for a partner we could exactly do all these things with. In CFER and especially in you, Daniel, we found a guy who knows what he is doing and we enjoyed running the first smaller project. We can recommend your service for young companies who want to do the next step, but also for bigger fishes, because you guys also have some good ideas.

CFER: As a F&B start-up founder competing on a global, demanding market, how important do you consider product innovation to be in order to gain competitive advantage over similar products?

NS: The interesting aspect about craft soda is that you always have to come up with new flavors – may they stay in your portfolio or just be a seasonal edition. It is like with the craft beers. Go to a Taproom, it is full of interesting references. As a craft soda producer, I feel with soda it is the same. The creative, the innovative win.

The collaboration with CFER Labs has helped the company to improve the first flavour of Why Not, Lemon’Mate. in nit.pt

CFER: How do you see your brand expanding in the next five years? Are there any strategic, international markets for “why not soda”?

NS: Of course, we have our strategic plan and there are interesting markets, but first we need to make our homework here in Portugal and work hard. If you can make it here, you can make it everywhere. We want to win the Portuguese for our soda experience.

CFER: Many thanks for your time. We wish prosperous growth for your business and we are looking forward for many more exciting “why not soda” flavors!

NS: Live long and prosper – drink more organic craft soda made in Portugal, why not!

Cover picture: in Dinheiro Vivo (Reinaldo Rodrigues/Global imagens)

As most of the foods we consume today, the product consists not only in the edible part but also in the packaging. In the immense world of packaging, the most used material is plastic, due to its good mechanical properties, flexibility, low weight and cheap cost of production. A recent study shows that the global production of plastics was raised from 2 million tons in the 1950’s to 348 million tones in 2017 and 359 million tons in 2018(1). However, in all stages of plastic’s lifetime, from extraction to recycling, a great amount of greenhouse gases are produced. While these gas emissions aren’t the only problem related to plastics, one of the biggest issues are the micro and nano plastics freed during its degradation in natural environment. These microplastics harden the CO2 absorption from the oceans, promoting an atmospheric CO2 regulation imbalance, ultimately climbing the food chain and potentially affecting the human health.

How can we prevent plastic misuse?

There are three possible destinies for all the waste we deposit in the plastic recycling container:

  • Being actually recycled, renewing packages and other useful sub-products;
  • Being incinerated for energy reuse;
  • Being dumped in a landfill.

Of course, the landfills are the worst possible solution, and thus the most avoided one. A 2017 study(2) shows that in Europe are produced about 25 million tons of plastic, and of those 25 million, 39.5% were incinerated, 30.8% end up in a landfill and just 29.7% are really recycled. A promising method uses Polyethylene (PE) as a carbon source for the production of Carbon Nano Tubes (CNT’s) by a laboratorial technique called Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD).

What are carbon nanotubes? 

CNT’s are emerging as powerful, flexible and resistant semiconductors. Their industrial application will seriously upgrade solar cell’s yield in photovoltaic panels, the production of display devices like TV screens, touch screens, transistors and others, increasing lithium ion battery’s yield and much more(3)(4)(5).

Carbon atom’s bounds are very strong and for that reason the mechanical properties of carbon nanotubes are also very strong, allowing future ropes and cables to be extremely strong, almost unbreakable.

Small fibers of nanotubes could be used as reinforcement agents of composite materials, increasing their resistance to traction or flexible forces.

How are CNT’s produced?

There are several ways to produce carbon nanotubes but the most promising method, in terms of scalability, is the method of Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) (6).

On a controlled environment, little fragments of low-density polyethylene (LDPE) are chosen. Then, they are heated to temperatures between 600oC-1000oC (7) and they are mixed with a catalyst that reduces the boiling temperature of LDPE. Once boiling, the vapor is transferred to another chamber where the temperature is lower. This will force the vapor to condensate. In the presence of a catalyst like a sheet of graphene, the rich carbonaceous vapor slowly deposits its carbon atoms onto the graphene surface forming nanotubes.

However, the growth control of this structures is still very limited. It is hard to estimate what is going to be the length, width and direction of these tubes, and that is still a challenge that needs to be surpassed so that the full potential of carbon nanotubes can be put to use.

This method is presently only developed in a laboratorial enviroment, but it is the most likely to be scaled in a near future due to its lower applied temperatures. Other methods, like laser ablation, employ much higher temperatures and demanding conditions.

Carbon nanotubes can be the raw material needed for the production of innovative, highly resistant materials.

Other solutions 

Recent advances in bio-fabrication technologies have led several startups to grow exponentially over the last decade, some of them focusing in plastic replacement.

A great substitute of Polystyrene (PS) consists on the compaction of a specific species of mushrooms. It is almost equal to polystyrene, but biodegradable. It was developed by the American company Ecovative and early adopted as packaging solutions for Dell’s products, accommodating technologic products such as computers and accessories. It was later adopted by IKEA in 2016.

As replacement of ethylene, small seaweed-based plastic bubbles were developed, and these can be used to encapsulate every kind of sauce or stable liquid, like water or juice. Being an edible and biodegradable packaging solution, created by Notpla, many fast food chains and retail markets have adopted the invention.

There is still a lot to be done, especially regarding consumer education. General population needs to be educated and informed about what is happening around the world, what are the consequences of inaction, what are the conditions where food is produced and with critical thinking decide if the simple act of buying a specific food can be harmful for someone or something, somewhere on the other side of the world.

There’s a great need to fight ignorance and lack of reliable information, not only in poor countries but also in rich and developed ones. Many companies and public entities work daily to provide knowledge and information to the general public and CFER Labs is one of them.

Written by André Azevedo – https://www.linkedin.com/in/andr%C3%A9-azevedo-668064163/

Bibliography
(1) Shen, M., Huang, W., Chen, M., Song, B., Zeng, G., & Zhang, Y. (2020). (Micro)plastic crisis: Un-ignorable contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Journal of Cleaner Production, 254, 120138. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.JCLEPRO.2020.120138
(2) Ragaert, K., Delva, L., & Van Geem, K. (2017). Mechanical and chemical recycling of solid plastic waste. Waste Management, 69, 24–58. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.WASMAN.2017.07.044
(3) Grace, T., Shearer, C., Tune, D., Yu, L., Batmunkh, M., Biggs, M. J., … Shapter, J. G. (2017). Use of Carbon Nanotubes in Third-Generation Solar Cells. Industrial Applications of Carbon Nanotubes, 201–249. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323- 41481-4.00008-3
(4) Jiang, K. (2017). Carbon Nanotubes for Displaying. Industrial Applications of Carbon Nanotubes, 101–127. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-41481-4.00004-6
(5) Fang, S., Shen, L., & Zhang, X. (2017). Application of Carbon Nanotubes in Lithium-Ion Batteries. Industrial Applications of Carbon Nanotubes, 251–276. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-41481-4.00009-5
(6) Wu, X., Mu, F., & Zhao, H. (2019). Recent progress in the synthesis of graphene/CNT composites and the energy-related applications. Journal of Materials Science & Technology. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.JMST.2019.05.063
(7) Ahmad, M., & Silva, S. R. P. (2020). Low temperature growth of carbon nanotubes – A review. Carbon, 158, 24–44. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.CARBON.2019.11.061

The year of 2019 reinforced our desire to continue our mission to create ever better, healthier, more natural and greener foods and beverages. From multinational producers to new entrepreneurs on the international food scene, CFER has been able to meet the challenges posed by its customers by constantly meeting targets and exceeding expectations.

With over 20 new projects and 5 new products on the market developed by our team, 2019 was a year of affirmation, growth and development of business relationships that we are truly proud of; within these, we have welcomed many partnerships with new entrepreneurs, with whom we have so enthusiastically been exploring the creation of exciting new products and the stimulation of new business models in the food and drinks business.

The year ahead is full of ambitious goals. We are attentive to new markets and the possibility of starting CFER’s presence in them, especially those that focus more on innovation and food technology. We also want to strengthen our involvement in healthy lifestyle communication initiatives, based on a diverse and balanced diet, where innovation can play a central role. The year of 2020 will also mark the year in which we will launch our first ingredients and products on the market, with a clear focus on the natural and organic, clean-label, vegan / vegetarian and functional food sectors; for this, CFER counts on its strategic partners that will ensure the commercialization and distribution of the products that are being gradually crafted by our innovation team.

Many reasons make us dream with a 2020 packed with many exciting challenges, achievements and criative moments. Let us toast to a great 2019 and to an exciting 2020 designed by new horizons.

Daniel Abegão
Founder of CFER Labs

 

CFER Labs is now a certified food and drinks research and development company. The distinction, attributed by the Portuguese National Agency of Innovation (ANI), aims to recognize the top scientific institutions in Portugal, their unique R&D methodologies and breakthroughs and the social impact of their scientific work.

How clients may benefit from this certification

While the present recognition from ANI is a clear clear proof of the quality of the company’s scientific work, clients with fiscal HQ in Portugal may benefit from a tax credit that may reach 82.5% of the total sum involved in the collaboration, according to the SIFIDE programme. Also, when applying for R&D public funding together with CFER Labs, applications will be distinctively valued and majorated up to 15% of the total eligible sum.

CFER Labs collaborates with companies expert in tax credit and building of applications for SIFIDE and R&D public funding, such as Portugal 2020.

 

Proteins are basic supplements for the human body. They are essential for proper maintenance and growth of the human body. Vegan protein powders are one of the major factors influencing the protein supplement market growth, as a result of rising population of flexitarians in U.S. and Canada. If you have ever thought that a ready-mix, vegan protein powder would be a great addition to your portfolio, check how we, at CFER Labs, would be a great partner for this project.

According to Transparency Market Research, protein powder was the dominant product segment within protein supplements and accounted for a market share of 68% in 2017, on account of predominant consumption among gym professionals.  Protein powders are powdered forms of protein that come from plants (soybeans, peas, rice, potatoes, or hemp), eggs, or milk (casein or whey protein). The powders may include other ingredients such as added sugars, artificial flavoring, thickeners, vitamins, and minerals. The amount of protein per scoop can vary from 10 to 30 grams.

Rapid innovation for manufacturing products containing an extensive range of amino acids and focus on functions, such as muscle repair, weight loss, energy balance, and satiety, is expected to create immense potential for market growth, and vegan protein powders are a clear rising star.

Characteristics of vegan proteins

Vegan protein sources normally lack lysine or methionine. [1] Grains are low in lysine, while legumes are low in methionine, both essential amino acids. Combining proteins is one way to ensure getting adequate amounts of essential amino acids. Almonds exhibit between 20 to 25g of protein per 100g. Like legumes, almonds are notably poor in methionine and lysine, however, almond protein is considered to be highly digestible. [3] Whole sunflower seeds exhibit 10 to 27g of protein per 100g, while the dehulled seed holds a higher amount of 20 to 40g of protein per 100g. [4] [5] Compared to other vegetable protein sources, sunflower seeds contain low or no antinutritional factors (e.g., protease inhibitors, cyanogens, goitrogenic factors, lectins, etc). Sunflower seeds are rich in acidic and aromatic amino acids and low content in lysine and sulfur-containing amino acids, like cysteine or methionine.

Both almond protein and sunflower protein are highly water soluble, which is important for the development of ready mix protein shakes.

Pea protein is an example of a complete protein which contains all the necessary amino acids, including BCAAs, which are effective in muscle building and fast absorption. [2] This segment is expected to account for 20.3% of total market share by the end of 2025 owing to its growing popularity among vegetarian and vegan population. Furthermore, this type of products is expected to remain a favorable choice for individuals allergic to egg or dairy proteins.

The vegan protein powder to be developed can also guarantee a further point of distinction by having an antioxidant capacity superior to other products, given it is made by using plant based proteins and extracts, rich in polyphenols and antioxidant vitamins. [6]

References

[1] S. S. Arya, A. R. Salve, and S. Chauhan, “Peanuts as functional food: a review,” J. Food Sci. Technol., vol. 53, no. 1, pp. 31–41, 2016.
[2] “69_461.Pdf.” .
[3] S. Ahrens, M. Venkatachalam, A. M. Mistry, K. Lapsley, and S. K. Sathe, “Almond (Prunus dulcis L.) protein quality,” Plant Foods Hum. Nutr., vol. 60, no. 3, pp. 123–128, 2005.
[4] S. González-Pérez, “Sunflower Proteins,” Sunflower Chem. Prod. Process. Util., pp. 331– 393, 2015.
[5] P. Ivanova, V. Chalova, L. Koleva, and I. Pishtiyski, “Amino acid composition and solubility of proteins isolated from sunflower meal produced in Bulgaria,” Int. Food Res. J., vol. 20, no. 6, pp. 2995–3000, 2013.
[6] E. Arab-Tehrany, M. Jacquot, C. Gaiani, M. Imran, S. Desobry, and M. Linder, “Beneficial effects and oxidative stability of omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids,” Trends Food Sci. Technol., vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 24–33, 2012.

 

CFER Labs has been invited to participate in UP By Wabel, a trade show for the food, drinks and beauty industries, taking place in the prestigious Carrousel du Louvre, Paris, in the next 27th and 28th of June of 2019. The show focuses on natural, clean-label and sustainable foods, drinks and beauty products, matching ‘new brands with international retailers, distributors, food services, specialized stores, concept stores, media and influencers from all over the world.’

Save the date – CFER Labs oral presentation in UP By Wabel

The company will deliver an oral presentation in UP By Wabel in the 28th of June at 1PM – How to create the next best Food & Drinks references – Research to create more natural products. The presentation, and the concept behind the show, focus on CFER Labs vision for tomorrow’s food and drinks marketplace.

As a company delivering exciting food and drinks innovation, CFER Labs believes the show will be a fantastic opportunity to meet international companies and entrepreneurs in the food and drinks business that could be looking for the next great innovation in the field.

Schedule your meeting with CFER Labs in UP By Wabel

CFER Labs is looking forward to meet you in UP By Wabel. Contact via info@cferlabs.co to schedule a meeting.

 

Tea can be consumed in different ways. The most popular one worldwide continues to be the infusion of the dried leaves, however, solid tea consumption is growing remarkably, especially due to the new matcha (powdered tea) consumption trend. Actually, tea was firstly consumed as a whole leaf instead of simply as an infusion. The leaves were not strained and tossed as we do now, and this allowed the consumers to take advantege of all of the nutricional aspects of the tea leaf, both the water soluble and the insoluble ones.

We might say that we are still in the leaf infusion Era and regarding this matter many questions usually arise. Which one is the best? To use loose leaf or tea bags?

Both have advantages and disadvantages.

Comparing tea quality

Generally loose leaf tea is of better quality than tea sold in tea bags, especially reagarding cheap tea bags, which contain mostly tea dust and tea fannings resulting from the tea leafs processing. However, there are many good quality tea bags which use either tea sourced from cut loose tea leasf instead of the byproducts of the tea industry and some top quality brands that even sell tea bags containing full tea leaves. I usually advise loose leaf tea for heavier tea drinkers as the tea sold in this fashion is hermetically sealed until use, unlike tea bags which can lose flavour and absorb smells very easily.

A common habit, even at speciality stores, is to open the tea container and give it to the client to smell. This is not hygienic at all and should be avoided. In this regard hermetically sealed tea bags can better preserve their flavour than frequently opened tea containers. If you can afford good quality tight containers or are a rather heavy consumer of loose leaf tea this shouldn’t however pose as big as a problem.

An advantage of brewing loose leaf tea is that you can see the beauty of the leafs unfold in hot water, admire how they look like before and after brewing and how they smell. You can also play with the amount of tea you wish to brew making it lighter or stonger. When using tea bags you can play with the flavour only by modulating either the water temperature or the infusion time.

When brewing loose leaf it implies you to have more specialized tea paraphernalia and time. Usually people more inclined to loose leaf teas invest more time in tea education and look for the perfect cup.

Tea bags are normally of a lower quality when comparing to loose, hermetically sealed tea.

Regarding tea bags a lot of debate has been made about the type of tea bag. Many advocate that the pyramidal tea bags are the best as they allow more room for the leaves to expand. While some say this is more of a marketing stategy, there are a few scientific reports regarding the loose leaf vs. tea bag “battle”. A recent study compared single, double and circular tea bags with loose leaf tea. What was found was that indeed leaf swealling is higher for loose leaf, followed by double chamber tea bags, single tea bags and circular tea bags. In another study, researchers found that, althought the kinetics of goodies, i.e., polyphenol content had a faster release time in tea leafs, and independent of infusion time, when adressing tea bags, the polyphenol content was dependent on the infusion time, probably due to the swelling rates verified by the comparing research group. At the end of the day, it all boils down to tea quality.

Would you rather have low quality loose leaf tea or good quality bagged tea? Common sense is always the key? What is you way of brewing tea?

CFER Labs is your partner in food and drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Sources

J Food Sci Technol. 2017 Jul;54(8):2474-2484. doi: 10.1007/s13197-017-2690-9. Epub 2017 May 18. “Swelling and infusion of tea in tea bags.”
Avicenna J Phytomed. 2016 May-Jun;6(3):313-21. “Effect of different brewing times on antioxidant activity and polyphenol content of loosely packed and bagged black teas (Camellia sinensis L.).”

Take a few minutes to search in yeast commercial suppliers catalogs and you will quickly find out the large number of different strains that are available for brewing beer and other beverages. Brewing yeast species were initially isolated from nature and later also domesticated in different parts of the world under different environments, which resulted in a variety of yeast strains with great physiological differences. The invention of the microscope had a key role on the initial identification and characterization of the different strains. Nowadays, the continuous development of microbiological and genetic tools along with new analytical techniques has contributed to a deeper understanding of the specific capabilities and limitations of each strain, as well as for the identification of novel yeast types.

Every year the number of fully characterized yeast strains increases and there are a few companies with culture banks that have a great variety of yeast strains: White Labs, WYEAST, Fermentis, Lallemand, Mangrove Jack’s, Imperial Yeast (organic) or CooLAB (organic), among others. In each website, you can find descriptions of each strain that will help you choosing the right strain for the intended beer type.

Start simple

If you are in doubt, start simple and brew with a yeast type which is a “work horse”, meaning that it will efficiently work for a great variety of beer styles. Still, there are some factors important to consider when choosing the yeast for alcoholic fermentation:

Attenuation – how much sugar can the yeast convert into alcohol. Usually, commercial suppliers divide the yeast strains in low, medium and high attenuation, varying from approximately 65 to 85%. The specific attenuation will impact not only the alcohol % but also the mouthfeel and flavor;

Flocculation level – how easy does the yeast cells settle after fermentation. This is an important feature when you wish to re-use the yeast to another fermentation. Besides that, a low flocculation yeast can lead to a lower attenuation, resulting in a worty flavor. On the other hand, if your yeast of choice has a high flocculation, the final beer will tend to be cloudier and you will be able to taste the yeast, like in weißbier or witbier;

Alcohol tolerance – alcohol level that inhibits and potentially kills your fermenting yeast. Choosing a strain that can stand the alcohol percentage you are planning to reach is extremely important, especially in those styles that require a high alcohol % such as Imperial Stout or Belgium Ale;

Temperature – each strain has a range of temperatures where it can grow, and it is important to know both the optimal and the extreme temperatures that the yeast can stand;

Metabolite production and sensoric properties – what kind of flavors and aromas are produced by the yeast strain. There are several metabolites (intermediates or final products of yeast metabolism) that can contribute to the sensoric properties of the finished beer: esters, carbonyl compounds, phenolics, higher “fusel” alcohols and fatty acids:

  • Esters are the resulting compounds from a reaction between an acid and an alcohol, and they are often associated with fruity notes in beer (e.g. ethyl acetate or isoamyl acetate). The specific types of esters formed, as well as their concentration, are strain-specific but the fermentation conditions also influence the ability of the yeast strain to produce them.  For instance, there are reports that high gravity brewing and high fermentation temperatures (20-25oC) result in higher levels of esters (as in some ale beer types).
  • More than 200 compounds with a carbonyl functional group have been found in beer, contributing for both its flavor and stability. Diacetyl and acetaldehyde are examples of carbonyl metabolites and probably the most “unwanted” compounds by brewers (except in some very specific beers), since they are considered off-flavors. Both the formation and conversion rates of those metabolites is strain-dependent, so the time that you will need to get a matured beer will depend on your yeast of choice. This is particularly important in large-scale production where time is a key control parameter.
  • Phenols are commonly associated with a medicinal or spicy aroma, and some specific types add astringency and/or bitterness in the finished beer. For instance, the earthy aroma present in Brett beers (fermented with Brettanomyces yeast) is directly linked to the formation of phenolic compounds.
  • When present in abundant levels, higher fusel alcohols, such as propanol and butanol, can result in fruity, floral and/or wine-like notes. Their formation can have a positive impact in ale beers but normally are not desired in ale types.
  • Fatty acids are essential elements in the yeast central metabolism, but they can also be broken down into staling compounds such as (E)-2-nonenal, which will give a “cardboard” character in the finished beer.
The presence of fermentation derived metabolites brings complexity to the final product, but in some specific cases they can also easily become overwhelming and give off-flavors.

In addition to the points mentioned above, when brewing at large-scale breweries there a few other parameters to consider when choosing the right yeast: stress tolerance, fermentation yield and productivity, mutation stability, among others. These are especially important for the re-usage of yeast in several fermentation cycles, which is a must in large-scale breweries to sustain the economical viability of the production process.

The number of identified and characterized yeast strains will increase more and more over the next years. I personally believe that some unique flavor profiles are yet to be found, and that will consequently expand the range of beer styles. If you are already brewing, what are your favorite yeast strains and how did you choose them? Tell us your yeastperiences in the comments below.

CFER Labs is your partner in food and drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Sources

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/jib.49 
https://www.esa.org/esablog/research/spontaneous-fermentation-the-role-of-microorganisms-in-beer/http://www.wyeastlab.com/fermentation
https://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpage/yeast-fermentation-and-the-making-of-beer-14372813
https://www.whitelabs.com/
https://www.grainfather.com/blog/week-60-choosing-a-yeast-strain-for-your-beer/
http://www.equippedbrewer.com/equipment-and-supplies/how-to-choose-the-right-yeast-for-your-craft-beverage
https://beerandbrewing.com/how-to-choose-a-yeast-strain/
http://scottjanish.com/esters-and-fusel-alcohols/

 

Energetic drinks are, without a question, one of the hottest topics in the food industry right now. However, in a time where a considerable fraction of the population shows stress symptoms, energy drinks might not be the answer your customer is looking for.

A relaxation drink is defined as a non-alcoholic beverage that contains calming ingredients. These drinks are growing in popularity and rely on the use of nutrients and herbs to reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. Sleeping drinks are also a growing trend in consumption, relying on slightly different natural components to induce the consumer a sensation of sleepiness and promoting a longer and more relaxed sleeping. Both types of drinks act by regulating a complex hormonal response in the consumer.

Stress, anxiety and sleep

Stress and anxiety are two major factors affecting the population. Stress is a condition arising from external physical or mental overload. It can make a person feel embattled, nervous, anxious or otherwise less capable of full and normal response to environmental demands.
Anxiety is a generalized mood of fear, worry and or uneasiness. It can be stimulated from environment factors, or result from bad habits or social situations. In developed countries, anxiety disorder rates range from 13.6% to 28.8% of the population. [1] The growing
urbanization, lack of exercise and stressful quotidian are bringing stress and anxiety to historical levels. Anxiety and stress may lead to insomnia, depression or even suicide.

Sleep plays a vital role in brain function and systemic physiology across many body systems. Problems with sleep are widely prevalent and include deficits in quantity and quality of sleep; sleep problems that impact the continuity of sleep are collectively referred to as sleep
disruptions. Disruption of sleep is widespread.

A 2014 survey conducted by the National Sleep Foundation reported that 35% of American adults rated their sleep quality as “poor” or “only fair”.

Trouble falling asleep at least one night per week was reported by 45% of respondents. In addition, 53% of respondents had trouble staying asleep on at least one night of the previous week, and 23% of respondents had trouble staying asleep on five or more nights. [2]

The hormonal regulation and possible ingredients for relaxation and improved sleep

Adaptogens are herbs that improve an individual’s ability to cope with stress and anxiety. These herbs normalize the physiological process of the body and help the body adapt to changes in times of increased stress, normally by reducing the serum cortisol levels, the stress hormone. A recent study discovered that Ashwagandha root extract safely improves an individual’s resistance towards stress and improves self-assessed quality of life by substantially lowering cortisol levels. [3] Other herbs, such as linden, hops or chamomille are also considered to be adaptogens in this regard. Chamomile is widely regarded as a mild tranquillizer and sleep inducer. Sedative effects may be due to the flavonoid apigenin that binds to benzodiazepine receptors in the brain. Studies in preclinical models have shown anticonvulsant and central
nervous system (CNS) depressant effects respectively. Clinical trials are notable for their absence, although 10 cardiac patients are reported to have immediately fallen into a deep sleep lasting for 90 minutes after drinking chamomile tea. [4]

According to American researchers [1], there are different types of anxiety that could be mild or sever depending on the level of the disorders. Using drugs is a common but harsh way to treat anxiety disorders. More natural treatments including amino acid, minerals, and fatty acids
ingestion can reduce anxiety and induce relaxation. Further, herbs and botanical medicine, such as St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum), Ginkgo biloba, Kava Kava, which have different roles to reduce many psychiatric disorders, also reduce anxiety.

In this regard, anxiety may be managed without the harsh side effects of pharmaceuticals using nutritional and botanical treatment as well as life-style changes.

Vitamins C, D, and E, omega-3 fatty acids, and the green tea amino acid L-theanine are dietary supplements known to increase the production of dopamine. Japanese researchers have found that the ingestion of 50 to 200mg of theanine promotes the generation of α-wavesin the brain some minutes after being ingested. α-waves have been studied as a relaxation index state in humans [5]. Theanine also lowers body temperature and blood pressure, two important factors in the relaxation process absent from drowsiness.

Drugs that alter serotonin levels are used in treating depression, generalized anxiety disorder and social phobia. Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) prevent the breakdown of monoamine neurotransmitters (including serotonin), increasing concentrations of the
neurotransmitter in the brain and promoting a sensation of relaxation and happiness. MAOI’s may be synthesized or natural. Herbs, spices and nutrients can inhibit MAO enzymes without the unpleasant side effects of antidepressants, examples being the nutmeg extract, the
passionflower, curcumin or black pepper extract. [6]

Herbs, spices and nutrients can inhibit MAO enzymes without the unpleasant side effects of antidepressants.

The sleep-wake cycle and its modulation

Both dopamine and serotonin play a non straightforward role in mammals’sleep-wake cycle and wakefulness/relaxation sensations. Dopamine can inhibit norepinephrine, causing the subject to feel more alert. Serotonin is involved in wakefulness, sleep onset, and preventing REM sleep.

Serotonin is required to produce melatonin, a hormone that plays a major role in sleep. The production and release of melatonin in the brain is connected to the time of day, increasing when it’s dark and decreasing when it’s light. Melatonin production declines with age.
Consumers use melatonin for sleep disorders, such as insomnia and jet lag. Unlike with many sleep medications, it does not promote dependency, habituation or experience a hangover effect. It is available as an ingredient for food and drink fortification. Melatonin can be used to treat delayed sleep phase and circadian rhythm sleep disorders in the blind and provide some insomnia relief. Valerian root extract is also a major sleep promoter, safely administered in food and pill forms.

Further, supplementation with the amino acid L-tryptophan and its precursor, 5-HTP, and the B vitamins, vitamin D, selenium, and omega-3 fats increases serotonin production. Tryptophan may increase agreeableness, decrease quarrelsomeness and improve mood. Although purified tryptophan increases brain serotonin, foods containing tryptophan do not. This is because tryptophan is transported into the brain by a transport system that is active towards all the large neutral amino acids and tryptophan is the least abundant amino acid in protein. α-Lactalbumin, a minor constituent of milk, is one protein that contains relatively more tryptophan than most proteins, and milk brands are taking advantage of this situation to incorrectly claim that milk promotes a better sleep through tryptophan ingestion.

α-Lactalbumin, a minor constituent of milk, is a protein that contains relatively more tryptophan than most proteins, and milk brands are taking advantage of this situation to incorrectly claim that milk promotes a better sleep through tryptophan ingestion.

Gamma-aminobutryric acid (GABA) is a major chemical signalling molecule in the process of relaxation/sleepiness and is becoming a trendy ingredient in the food industry. A randomized, single-blind, placebo-controlled crossover-designed study was conducted to evaluate the effect of GABA on sleep. Sleep was evaluated by electroencephalography (EEG) after oral GABA administration. GABA significantly shortened sleep latency and increased the total non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep time. Questionnaires showed that subjects receiving GABA realized its effects on sleep. [7] Dietary GABA supplement in clinical studies relieves anxiety and increases alpha brain waves, which are associated with relaxation.

The bottom line

The sensation of relaxation and sleeping promotion are interconnected. However, some ingredients, whether natural or synthetic, may be more adequate for a specific application, and regulatory laws may soon be imposed in incipient markets. In a further piece we will explore how regulatory laws may be applied to this sector and the market size for this type of innovative drinks.

CFER Labs is your partner in food and drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Sources

[1] E. Alramadhan, M. S. Hanna, M. S. Hanna, T. G. Goldstein, S. M. Avila, and B. S. Weeks, “Dietary and botanical anxiolytics,” Med. Sci. Monit., vol. 18, no. 4, p. RA40-RA48, 2012.
[2] G. Medic, M. Wille, and M. E. H. Hemels, “Short- and long-term health consequences of sleep disruption,” Nat. Sci. Sleep, vol. 9, pp. 151–161, 2017.
[3] and S. A. K. Chandrasekhar, Jyoti Kapoor, “A Prospective, Randomized Double-Blind,  Placebo-Controlled Study of Safety and Efficacy of a High-Concentration Full-Spectrum Extract of Ashwagandha Root in Reducing Stress and Anxiety in Adults,” Indian J.
Psychol. Med., vol. 34, no. 3, pp. 255–262, 2012.
[4] J. M. Hodgson and K. D. Croft, Tea flavonoids and cardiovascular health, vol. 31, no. 6. 2010.
[5] D. C. Chu, T. Okubo, Y. Nagato, and H. Yokogoshi, “L-theanine – A unique amino acid of green tea and its relaxation effect in humans,” Trends Food Sci. Technol., vol. 10, no. 6–7, pp. 199–204, 1999.
[6] R. Article, “Available online through www.jpronline.info Natural Monoamine oxidase inhibitors : A Review,” vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 482–485, 2010.
[7] A. Y. Y. P. M. Kim, “Effect of oral γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) administration on sleep and its absorption in humans,” Food Sci. Biotechnol., vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 547–551, 2016.

 

Bone broth is made by simmering animal bones and tissue for at least 8 hours with optional vegetables, herbs, spices and salt.

The health benefits of bone broth (or soup) have been long perceived, but only a decade ago was the remedial effect of bone broth scientifically evaluated. For instance, the generally believed curing effect of chicken soup against symptomatic upper respiratory tract infection has been found to follow from an increase in nasal mucus velocity or its mild anti-inflammatory effect.

More recently, bone broth has been increasingly recommended as part of the diets for gut and psychology syndrome (GAPS) patients, such as those with autism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Brand owners and marketeers are supporting the growth of bone broth as a functional product by claiming that it can quell inflammation, speed healing, calm allergies, combat fatigue and promote satiety. These attributes could be attributed to broth’s protein, collagen, gelatin, essential and inessential aminoacids and minerals. Several media and academic references support the positive attributes of bone broth, as shown below:

The Nourished Kitchen – Bone broths are extraordinarily rich in protein, and can be a source of minerals as well. Glycine supports the bodies detoxification process and is used in the synthesis of hemoglobin, bile salts and other naturally-occurring chemicals within the body. Glycine also supports digestion and the secretion of gastric acids. Proline, especially when paired with vitamin C, supports good skin health.

Kettle and Fire – Bones and connective tissue are storehouses for essential amino acids and minerals — which are lacking in many diets today. Bone broth is also an invaluable source of protein, collagen and gelatin.

Medical News Today – Drinking bone broth may be beneficial for the joints and digestive system, among other things. Bone broth is highly nutritious, may protect the joints, may help fight osteoarthritis, may help reduce inflammation and heal the gut, may aid sleep and may support weight loss.

Cognitune – Enhancement of weight loss and metabolism, with fantastic properties regarding detoxification, digestion and weight loss.

A 2017 research study included bone broth as part of a recommendable microbiome restoration procedure.

Brand owners and marketeers are supporting the growth of bone broth as a functional product by claiming that it can quell inflammation, speed healing, calm allergies, combat fatigue and promote satiety. However, the topic is controversial.

On a 2016 piece titled ‘Science Can’t Explain Why Everyone is Drinking Bone Broth’, Time Magazine claims that ‘there isn’t much research on bone broth to support—or refute—these health claims. But several experts on human digestion say the nutrients that supposedly make
bone broth special are not, in fact, all that unique.’ A recent australian research paper advises that ‘If the intake of collagen precursors is proven to support the synthesis of new collagen in vivo, it’s unlikely that bone broth can provide a consistently reliable source of key amino acids.’ More research is needed, and while no source claims its unhealthiness, bone broth seems to contain a fair concentration of protein and minerals, promoting satiety and a warmth feeling. However, it may not be delivering the remarkable nutrition that some entities are claiming, especially due to bioavailability issues and insuficient concentration of the key nutritional compounds for a superior level of functionality.

Evidences seem to suggest that the longer the cooking, the more gelatin and minerals are extracted, a key goal while producing bone broth. The extended cooking promotes the release of aminoacids from bones.

Production of bone broth

While any bone or ligament can be used, knuckles, chicken feet, and femur bones tend to contain the most collagen. Beef, chicken and fish are the most used animals for bone broth production. As with stock, bones are typically roasted first to improve the flavor of the bone
broth. The bones may contain a small amount of meat adhering to them. At the end of cooking, the bones should crumble when pressed lightly between the thumb and forefinger. While the bone broth is being prepared, proteinaceous foamy scum typically bubbles up at the
top of the pot. Removing it helps to clarify the broth and improve its flavor. At the end of the desired time of cooking, the bones and other debris are discarded and the remaining liquid can be filtered or strained for higher purity. After conditioning the final liquid in the fridge, the
natural fat from the broth is typically removed, yielding a brown coloured liquid with a turbid look. The final product is microbiologically unstable, so that a pasteurization/sterilization cycle will be needed to increase the shelf-life of commercial liquid bone broths. The pasteurized broth may display a shelf-life of over 2 years. Optionally, the broth may be dehydrated to a powdered form, allowing for its posterior reconstitution with boiling water.

A growing market for bone broth

According to figures from Global Market Insights, Inc, global broth market is projected to exceed USD 2.8 billion by 2024; according to a new research report by Global Market Insights, Inc. changing consumer preference towards animal-based stock as a protein source will drive broth market growth. Rising health consciousness and high disposable income will support the product penetration. Factors such as rapid urbanization and ageing population are anticipated to propel ready to drink broth market size.

North America broth market will witness growth over 4% up to 2024. High disposable income and trend of ready to eat food due to changing lifestyle will propel regional industry size. Increasing consumer consciousness regarding health benefits associated with stock
consumption over traditional soups will fuel product penetration. Asia Pacific broth market size accounted for over 15% of the industry share in 2016. The regional industry growth is attributed  to large consumer base and increasing spending on packaged food. Increasing working women population in the region is also likely to influence product demand. Development of multi outlet food channels will drive convenient buying of products thus, propelling regional industry growth.

Growing awareness regarding personal fitness among young and adults will fuel broth market size. Improved metabolism, bone strength and enhanced immunity are the key health benefits offered by the product. Increasing popularity of rich nutrient beverages to avoid dependency on medicines and health supplements will provide lucrative opportunities for the industry growth.

CFER Labs is your partner in food and drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Sources

D. Hsu, C. Lee, W. Tsai, and Y. Chien, “Essential and toxic metals in animal bone broths,” Food Nutr. Res., vol. 61, no. 1, p. 1347478, 2017.

L. K and H. J, “Microbiome restoration diet improves digestion, cognition and physical and emotional wellbeing.,” PLoS One, vol. 12, no. 6, 2017.

F. Seebohm, “The Tribal System of Wales,” 1904

https://www.cognitune.com/bone-broth-benefits/

The beverage industry is pushing forward at a quick pace and top developments in the field during 2019 should still be oriented for the rise of natural, functional and sustainable drinks; however, consumers are seeking increased value chain transparency and beverage personalization. Discover below some of the top tendencies for 2019 within the drinks business.

CFER Labs is your partner in drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Healthy energy drinks with alternative sources of energy

Energy drinks are one of the fastest growing products in the global drinks market. This growth has been brought by an escalating evident consumer focus on fitness and health. In 2017, the global energy drinks market stood at USD 55 billion and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 3.7% during the forecasted period of 2018-2023, according to figures from Mordor Intelligence. The biggest oportunities for market growth lie in the European continent and in Asia-Pacific region, respectively due to a scarce offer of healthy, zero-calorie, low sugar functional drinks in Europe and increasing income, rising sports activities and urbanization in the Asia-Pacific region.

The caffeine presence in energy drinks is raising moderate levels of concern. As a result, manufacturers may wish to gradually replace caffeine by naturally energetic plant extracts in new launches for 2019, such as green coffee extract or matcha.

The caffeine presence in energy drinks may gradually be replaced by naturally energetic plant extracts in new launches for 2019.

Hyper functional drinks with ethnic and regional ingredients

According to Beverage Daily, consumers are increasingly willing to seek super ingredients in their drinks, such as goji, aloe vera, turmeric, functional spices or matcha, traditionally used as regional ethnic ingredients with known health benefits. Other ingredients, such as microalgae and mushroom extract are also gaining relevance. Consumers will look for convenient, hyper functional drinks during 2019 as part of a beverage industry gradually mixed with the vitamin and supplement industry.

New launches will reflect consumer demand for overall wellness goals, as improved sleep, cognitive function, beauty, weight loss and gut health, being expectable that new products will address deeper health issues as oral and cardiovascular health.

Consumers are increasingly willing to seek super ingredients in their drinks, such as goji, aloe vera, turmeric, functional spices or matcha.

Plant based beverages

More and more people are introducing plant-based products in their diet for health and sustainability claims. Plant based product claims have grown 62% globally from 2013 to 2017, according to figures from NDP Group. The plant-based eating and drinking movement has been promoted by celebrities, athletes, multinational retailers, food and tech companies and countries such as China. There has been a 600% increase in people identifying as vegans in the U.S in the last three years, according to a survey from GlobalData, and 350% in the UK comparing to ten years ago. According to Nielsen, vegetarianism in Portugal rose by 400% in the last decade.

In 2019 there should be a rise in the offer of plant based drinks, such as vegetable milks and drinks from soy, almond, coconut and oats, plant-based protein drinks and also exotically-flavoured malted beverages.

Almond drink leads the category of vegetable milks along with soy and coconut.

Sustainable beverages

Sustainability is growing steadily to be one of the top concerns of consumers in 2019. This is mainly related to plastic unsustainability due to recent environmental scandals and the origin and trade of ingredients. Data from Nielsen and Mintel indicates that consumers are willing to pay more for products that make claims on sustainability, while Imbibe Magazine states that consumers are using the social media to share messages about the responsibility of the purchase. Eco-friendly packaged beverages and the use of internationally certified fair-trade ingredients should become more prevalent in 2019.

Concerns regarding the origin and trade of the ingredients are becoming more prevalent among consumers.

Clean label and simple communication

Consumers are demanding clean labels and a simple communication on their products to know what exactly they consume and at what level, and national government agencies are supporting this interest. In 2019 this trend should continue to gain momentum.

The soft drinks market has witnessed in recent years the biggest percentage of clean label product introduction in Asia, the fastest growth rate region for clean label products. Within the clean label segment, natural colours are witnessing high demand due to organic and functional claims.

According to figures from Mordor Intelligence, 88% of consumers are willing to pay a premium price for products containing naturally sourced ingredients, and close to 80% of the consumers give importance to reading ingredient lists on the product before purchasing.

The trend for clean label beverages will predictably continue to grow during 2019.

CFER Labs is your partner in drinks R&D. Obtain your free of charge workplan by clicking here.

Sources
https://www.mordorintelligence.com/industry-reports/energy-drinks-market
https://www.mordorintelligence.com/industry-reports/clean-label-ingredients-market
HTTPS://WWW.BEVERAGEDAILY.COM/ARTICLE/2018/12/05/TOP-FIVE-PREDICTIONS-FOR-2019-BEVERAGE-TRENDS
https://foodrevolution.org/blog/vegan-statistics-global/

 

Adipose tissue is a vital connective tissue for all mammals. Its main role is to store energy in the form of lipids while insulating the body. It also contains a variety of crucial cells that act on the body’s immune and structural functions. Obesity is a medical condition defined by an excess of body fat. This disease increases the chances of developing conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, cancer or depression,  decreasing the individual’s quality of life. Obesity is one of the leading preventable causes of death worldwide, mainly promoted by the intake of high-energy foods and low energy expenditure.

Thermogenic molecules

Some specific ingredients might contribute for one’s weight management goals with no need for extra energy expenditure or change in sedentary lifestyle. Foods such as chilli peppers, white and black pepper, ginger and cinnamon have in their composition capsaicin-like molecules, respectively piperine, gingerol and cinnamaldehyde.

Researchers found that the consumption of these food products promote the release of sympathetic-nerve mediated norepinephrine, naturally activating the brown adipose tissue thermogenesis by up-regulating the action of the uncoupling protein 1 in the mitochondria (UCP1) (Saito et. al. 2015). The UCP1 dissipates energy by oxidizing fatty acids and glucose to heat. Other ingredients, such as green tea or wasabi, also contribute to the up regulation of this protein.

Thermogenic and anti-obesity effects of capsacin-like food molecules, mediated by the release of sympathetic-nerve norepinephrine. This mechanism triggers the brown adipose tissue thermogenesis by up-regulating the action of the uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) in the mitochondria. in Saito et. al. 2015

The consumption of these foods and spices might not always be possible in the desired concentration by consumers with weight issues. To overcome this limitation, companies may explore the potential of a new generation of anti-obesity, naturally thermogenic food products. It has been shown that the oral ingestion of capsules with capsinoids, substances naturally present in chili peppers, increases the energy expenditure mediated by the thermogenesis located in the brown adipose tissue (Yoneshiro et. al. 2012). Edible plant and spice extracts, naturally clean-label, mostly calorie free and widely available, may thus be the shining stars of a new generation of functional products for weight management issues, proven to be their safety in the public food and health system.


Sources
  • Yoneshiro, T. et al. (2012) Non pungent capsaicin analogs (capsinoids) increase energy expenditure through the activation of brown adipose tissue in humans. Am. J.Clin.Nutr. 95, 845–850 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22378725