Category Archives: Innovation

Kombuchawhaaat? If you have never heard about this beverage, do not be afraid! The pronunciation is easier than it looks and it is tastier than it sounds! Kombucha is a beverage that results from the fermentation of black or green tea leaves and cane sugar with several bacterial and yeast species – a Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast (SCOBY). Kombucha is one of the rising stars in the revival of specialty fermented beverages that has been taking place in the market over the last recent years.

The rise of fermented beverages, both in variety and production volume, has been defined as one of the most important trends in 2019 within the food beverage sector. To give you a more objective picture, the global fermented beverages market is expected to increase steadily until 2023, reaching 935 billion euros (in 2015 it was valued at 600 billion euros). The beverage consumers and the millennials generation in particular have a high interest on experiencing novel and unusual flavors together with different textures and the fermentation process can strongly influence those characteristics.

What makes kombucha unique

But why is Kombucha so special within the large variety of fermented beverages? Kombucha is a low-sugar tea-based fermented beverage with considerable levels of organic acids, vitamins and polyphenols, known for their health benefits. By adding fruit, herbs or flavors into this mixture you get a quite unique and refreshing beverage that is, most often, sparkling and non-/low-alcoholic. Kombucha can have a drier and/or tarter character like the traditional ciders or the “Brett” beers and the production of alcohol can also be boosted by adjusting the fermentation conditions (if alcohol is higher than 4.5% it is referred as Hard Kombucha). The explosion of flavors present in Kombucha can be quite overwhelming in the start due to its high acidity but quite addictive afterwards. The definition of Kombucha is quite broad and there is a great variety of flavors and profiles in the market at the moment, going from soft-drink like beverages with low sugar and high drinkability to more dry and acidic beverages that can be in the direction of sour beers or dry cider.

Tea and sugar are two central ingredients for the production of kombucha

One of the best parts about Kombucha is that you can produce it at home with a very limited amount of kitchen gear, no fancy equipment being needed.

There are several dedicated websites with infographics and videos that can be very helpful before you do your first Kombucha brew, where more detailed explanations about the gear required as well as recipes and how to find and get the SCOBY. In a simplistic way, the production process of kombucha requires two fermentation steps:

  • Primary fermentation:the mixture of yeast and bacterial species converts the sugar into ethanol and organic acids. At the start of the process, oxygen is present (aerobic conditions), which promotes the cell division of the yeast species and later conversion of sugar into ethanol and carbon dioxide (CO2). The type and proportion of yeast species varies from SCOBY to SCOBY but SaccharomycesBrettanomyces, Pichia and Hanseniaspora are some of the most common ones. When sugar is depleted, ethanol becomes the most abundant carbon source, which promotes the activity of the different bacterial species that will convert it into organic acids. Species belonging to the genus AcetobacterGluconobacter and Lactobacillus are the major responsible for the production of acetic acid, gluconic acid and glucuronic acid. Acetic acid, that gives vinegar aroma and taste, is normally the most abundant organic acid when the primary fermentation is finished. At the beginning of the process the SCOBY will be at the top of the flask and during the fermentation it starts to sink, forming a new SCOBY at the top. Thus, at the end of the primary fermentation you will have two SCOBYs that can be used for two new batches of Kombucha.
SCOBY – The Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast that is responsible for the formation of unique flavors and aromas in Kombucha (Image from BUCHI, www.buchi.com.au/)
  • Secondary fermentation: the Kombucha from the primary fermentation is filtered to remove the major particles and then flavored by adding fruit, juices, herbs, spices and/or others. The sugar addition from the flavoring step will promote the anaerobic fermentation of yeast, resulting in the formation of carbon dioxide (CO2) which naturally carbonates the final beverage. When this step is made directly in the bottle – bottle fermentation – it can be tricky since you need to calculate how much CO2 will be produced from the sugar added during flavoring. The first time you may get an over-carbonated beverage with too much fizz.

Even though there are many reports regarding the positive impact of Kombucha on the digestive system and gut health together with its action as anticarcinogenic, antihypertensive, antidiabetic, and hepatoprotective, it is important to note that currently, Kombucha cannot be granted with any official health claims. I believe that in a near future some concrete results from clinical studies will give a more accurate information regarding the active functionalities of Kombucha.

Kombucha flavoring step (image from ifoodreal, https:// ifoodreal.com/)

The Kombucha presence in the European market is still limited when comparing with the United States, where this fermented beverage can be found throughout the whole country. The implementation of Kombucha in Europe requires some more consumer education since it is a beverage with a unique and acquired taste, but it is clear that more and more people are becoming aware of its existence and benefits. Next time you see some Kombucha in a shop or pub, go for it and give it a try! Soon after there is a high chance that you will be planning your first brew of Kombucha at home.

Sources

https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2017/04/17/961353/0/en/Global-Fermented-Beverages-Market-2014-2016-2023-Launches-of-New-Products-are-Stimulating-the-Market-Growth.html
https://www.foodnavigator.com/Article/2018/05/04/There-is-a-mega-trend-around-fermentation-The-rising-star-of-fermented-foods
Coton, Monika, et al. “Unraveling microbial ecology of industrial-scale Kombucha fermentations by metabarcoding and culture-based methods.” FEMS microbiology ecology 93.5 (2017).
Professional Kombucha Brewers Workshop, Barcelona (2019).
Jayabalan, Rasu, et al. “A review on kombucha tea—microbiology, composition, fermentation, beneficial effects, toxicity, and tea fungus.” Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety 13.4 (2014): 538-550.
Dutta, Himjyoti, and Sanjib Kr Paul. “Kombucha Drink: Production, Quality, and Safety Aspects.” Production and Management of Beverages. Woodhead Publishing, 2019. 259-288.

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Environmental pollution caused by industry has increased in last decades. The industrial chemical processes use mainly volatile and inflammable organic solvents and require high time and energy demands. In addition, currently, the techniques used have low extraction efficiencies and poor selectivity. The focus of scientists is now the development of more sustainable and environmental friendly chemical processes for the production, extraction and purification of biomolecules and bioactive compounds.

Ionic liquids have emerged as a promising alternative solvent since they are known by their non-flammable, non-volatile and recyclable character, being many times called green solvents. Since Paul Walden described the first ionic-liquid (ethylammonium nitrate) in 1914, the ionic liquids became one of the major scientific area of research and the number of papers addressing their outstanding properties has exponentially increased from a few to more than 5000 in the last 20 years.

In this piece I will describe ionic liquids from a clinical point of view; specifically, I will evidence how ionic liquids may be important in the diagnosis industry. In a further piece, I will describe the surprising applications that ionic liquids have on the food and drinks industry.

What are ionic liquids?

Ionic liquids are salts constituted by large unsymmetrical organic cations and organic or inorganic cations. Due to this asymmetry they not easily form a crystalline structure and they are liquid salts at low (<100ºC) temperatures. The ionic character associated to ionic liquids is responsible for their negligible vapor pressure, non-flammability and high chemical and thermal stabilities. In addition, ionic liquids are recognized by their excellent solvation ability for a wide range of compounds and as a good stabilization media for biological molecules such as proteins. Moreover, ionic liquids are recognized as tunable designer solvents, a result of the possibility of choose the cation and anion constituents offering a large number of ion combinations and the possibility of designing specific solvents allowing the development of more effective extraction and purification platforms.

Ionic liquids in clinical and pharmacological fields

Aqueous biphasic systems (ABS) are, in general, two aqueous solutions of structurally different compounds separated into two coexisting phases where, above a given concentration, one of the phases will be enriched in one of the solutes and other in the second one. Below this concentration both phases are miscible. The mono- and biphasic region of each ABS is usually depicted in a phase diagram with a binodal curve separating the miscible and immiscible region.

Phase diagram example of an IL-based ABS.

The partitioning behaviour of a protein among the coexisting phases of an ABS is a complex phenomenon but a lot of attention has been given to the extraction, purification and concentration of proteins and other biomolecules of clinical interest using ionic liquids as phase-forming components of aqueous biphasic systems, in particular, a specific type of ionic liquids.

Proteins stability is highly affected by the pH of the medium and this specific type of IL show self-buffering capacity at pHs among 6-8. Being aware of this property, researchers developed a patent pending single-step platform to extract and concentrate prostate specific antigen (PSA), a prostate cancer biomarker. However, the PSA measurement requires the use of blood in a laborious and expensive techniques. Using ABS composed of ionic liquids lead to the total extraction of PSA to the ionic liquid-rich phase and, by reducing this one, it was concentrated samples of urine with PSA up to a factor that allows their measurement in a less expensive and laborious approach such as a simple HPLC analysis. In addition, HPLC analysis have shown that different PSA isoforms could be measured allowing the use of urine for primary or complementary prostate cancer diagnosis and evaluation, what can be a revolution in methodologies of cancer for early detection. There are a lot of cancer biomarkers, and by using specific ionic liquids, it could be possible to achieve a platform where a mixture of ILs is employed in an ABS composed of ionic liquids and urine to, in a single step, measure all of biomarkers related to each type of cancer. This will thus lead to a cheaper, non-invasive, and much more reliable early detection of cancer.

Graphic representation of the use of IL’s for the purification and concentration of PSA.

Besides, attention have also been given to the use of ionic liquids in pharmaceutical industries in the production segment as a way of reducing the use of environmentally hazardous and toxic organic solvents, and as a way of reducing the pollution, recovering drugs from wastes valuing them.

ABS composed of ionic liquids were found to be a successfully platform to extract morphine and the vasodilator papaverine (extraction efficiency of 96%).

Antibiotics, such as tetracycline, penicillin G or ciprofloxacin were also studied. In one investigation, penicillin G was extracted from a filtered fermentation broth with extraction efficiencies of 90%.

Studies regarding the purification and valorization of pharmaceutical solid wastes proposes new strategies to reuse them as an alternative to incineration. An integrated platform for the recovery of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen, naproxen and ketoprofen was conceptualized and involves 3 steps: extraction and purification of NSAIDs using IL three phase partitioning systems; precipitation of the drug using antisolvents; recycle and reuse of solvents. The results shown extraction efficiencies of approximately 84% and isolation efficiencies higher than 75 %, what are promising results not only because of the possibility of reuse and recycle the components, but also because of their low cost.

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

Sources

[1]      Z. Lei, B. Chen, Y.-M. Koo, and D. R. MacFarlane, “Introduction: Ionic Liquids,” Chem. Rev., vol. 117, no. 10, pp. 6633–6635, 2017.[2]      F. A. E Silva, M. Caban, M. Kholany, P. Stepnowski, J. A. P. Coutinho, and S. P. M. Ventura, “Recovery of Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs from Wastes Using Ionic-Liquid-Based Three-Phase Partitioning Systems,” ACS Sustain. Chem. Eng., vol. 6, no. 4, pp. 4574–4585, 2018.
[3]      K. Ghandi, “A Review of Ionic Liquids, Their Limits and Applications,” Green Sustain. Chem., vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 44–53, 2014.
[4]      T. Summary, “PSA PURIFICATION AND CONCENTRATION FROM URINE SAMPLES FOR NON-INVASIVE EARLY STAGE DIAGNOSIS OF PROSTATE CANCER PSA PURIFICATION AND CONCENTRATION FROM URINE SAMPLES FOR NON-INVASIVE EARLY STAGE DIAGNOSIS OF,” pp. 1–2.
[5]      S. P. M. Ventura, F. A. E Silva, M. V. Quental, D. Mondal, M. G. Freire, and J. A. P. Coutinho, “Ionic-Liquid-Mediated Extraction and Separation Processes for Bioactive Compounds: Past, Present, and Future Trends,” Chem. Rev., vol. 117, no. 10, pp. 6984–7052, 2017.

 

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/

In the present demanding market, where a constant search for foods with high benefit-quality ratio is increasingly taking place, the innovation possibilities often lie in the most common and versatile everyday foods, such as the egg.

Used in almost every aspect of the gastronomy, from confectionery to soups, an egg is an important ally for all chefs and kitchen households. An egg alone is one of the most nutritious and appreciated foods on the planet. It is a high protein and low carb intake food, excellent for those who want a simple, easy and healthy snack, such as the common hard-boiled version. In fact, a whole egg contains a relevant amount of several important vitamins and minerals.

The nutritious egg – the forgotten superfood?

Along with milk, eggs contain the highest biological value for protein. One egg has only 75 calories but 7 grams of high-quality protein, 5 grams of fat, and 1.6 grams of saturated fat. According to the reference daily intake (RDI) nutrient values for a healthy adult, a large egg has vitamin A (19% RDI), responsible for immune system and good vision maintenance and a set of B vitamins, such as riboflavin (42% RDI), pantothenic acid (28% RDI), pyridoxine (9% RDI), folate (11% RDI) and cobalamin (46% RDI), essential for cell division processes and mental health.

Egg yolks are one of the few foods that naturally contain vitamin D (15% RDI), essential for strong bones and muscles, as well as overall health. In fact, the majority of the egg’s vitamins and minerals are located within the yolk. Vitamin E, iron, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids are also found in relevant concentrations in the egg.

The high quality proteins of the egg, essentially albumins, mucoproteins and globulins, contain a set of essential amino-acids like leucine, tryptophan, methionine and other non-essential aminoacids, which will act as precursor molecules in human metabolism. It is also noteworthy the high concentration of choline (60% RDI), an essential vitamin-like nutrient involved in the metabolism of molecules necessary for good neural-muscle function and its control in humans. For muscle building and fitness athletes the ingestion of these nutrients is of extreme importance for cell regeneration and muscle growth.

Cholesterol is perhaps the most controversial nutrient in the egg, one large egg containing more than two thirds of the RDI for this nutrient, currently set at 300 mg. However, several recent studies showed that there is no significant correlation between the egg’s cholesterol and an increase of blood harmful LDL cholesterol levels in healthy humans. The ingestion of one whole egg a day, preferably hard-boiled, is recurrently suggested by nutritionists and medical specialists as an important incorporation in one’s diet.

One whole egg contains an impressive set of nutrients in quite relevant concentrations.

The egg market

From over the 75 million tons of eggs produced worldwide, the Asia-Pacific region represents the biggest market for egg and egg products, being India, Indonesia, Japan and China the key players due to its population and economic growth over the last decades. China alone is responsible for almost 40% of both worldwide production and consumption. North and Latin American regions are also important markets regarding egg products, with USA leading the charts, followed by Mexico and Brazil.

In the European context, according to the last stats of the European Commission for Agriculture and Rural Development, more than 7 million tons of eggs were produced in 2018 within the economic space, where 7 of the 28 members, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and UK, were responsible for over 80% of the total production. If the Russian and Turkey markets were to be included (European countries not in EU) the Economic European Space market would represent twice its actual numbers regarding the egg production and consumption. The Portuguese case represents a modest percentage, with only 0,1 million tons of eggs produced for consumption in the last year. Although lifestyle tendencies such as veganism or higher healthcare awareness are rising in popularity, these do not seem to be threatening the growing tendency of the egg market, especially in the Asian continent.

From farm to table

An average person consumes 180 eggs per year. The majority of these eggs (about 50%) are produced by enriched feed hens in cages followed by barn-raised hens (26%), free range hens (14%) and organic feed hens (5%). The difference between all these eggs raising hens are concerned to their diet and growth space.

Eggshell size, form and specially color are commonly associated by consumers as main characteristics for egg quality, however, this is only dependent on the hens’ breed, size and feed.

Whiter breeds tend to lay white eggs while darker ones tend to lay browner eggshells. As for the yolk, the same applies, being the hens’ diet the major factor responsible for its color. While grain-fed chickens produce pale-yellow yolks, hens fed with rich pigmented and nutritious food from insects, vegetables, fruits and grasses produce deep orange yolks. The real egg quality is given by the age of the hen and its feeding over the growing process, where older hens tend to lay thinner eggshells and shorter shelf-life eggs than younger and nutrient controlled-feed hens.

The hen’s nutrition plays the major role in the colour of the final egg yolk.

Applications beyond breakfast

From cosmetic industry to medicine, the egg components are used in a wide range of areas for remarkably different goals. Nowadays it is easy to find different forms of whole egg, yolk or egg white in retail stores, ranging from solid to concentrated, crystalized, frozen or deep-frozen states. From the yolk is extracted its oil, consisting mainly of triglycerides and other elements, such as lecithin, cholesterol, biotin and xanthopylls. This non-allergic oil becomes free from egg proteins and is therefore allowed for use in cosmetics or dermatological products for hair fall, eczemas or dermatitis. The natural pigments (xanthopylls) present in the yolk, lutein (E161b) and zeaxanthin (E161h), are also of high interest for the pharmaceutical and food industry for their attractive yellow and orange colors.

Lecithin (E322) was actually first isolated from the egg yolk in 1846 by the French chemist and pharmacist Theodore Gobley. This product is currently in high demand due to its emulsifying, lubricant and stabilizing properties, which were commonly obtained with the use of soybean oil. However, EU legislation has been inciting the use of allergen-free natural lecithin food sources, minimizing the use of soybean. Lecithin is also a molecule used in a variety of pharmaceutical and cosmetic products due to its stabilizing capacities and choline enrichment.

Eggs are also used as ingredients for alcoholic drinks, as in the case of the famous eggnog, or as clarifying agents for superior category wines and rich broths. In the pharmaceutical sector, the egg has been used for over 70 years in the manufacturing of flu vaccines due to its concentration of albumins, mucoproteins and other globulins. The eggshells are also a valuable resource for organic agriculture as a source of natural calcium.

The numerous shapes that the egg can assume are a clear representation of its high acceptance and versatility, with verified health benefits at an affordable price.

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

Sources
http://ec.europa.eu/agriculture/markets/index
https://www.mordorintelligence.com/industry-reports/processed-egg-market
https://www.transparencymarketresearch.com/egg-products-market.html
Miranda, J. M. et al, (2015), Egg and Egg-Derived Foods: Effects on Human Health and Use as Functional Foods, Nutrients, vol. 7, 706-729.
Garcés-Rimon M. et al., (2015) Egg protein hydrolysates: New culinary textures, International Journal of Gastronomy and Food Science, vol. 3, 17-22.
Wu Jianping et al., (2014) Eggs and Egg product processing, Food Processing: Principles and Applications, published by John Wiley & Sons,  2nd edition, chapter 19, 437-455.

The final countdown has started and with only a few days to go until we welcome 2019, it’s now time to begin the preparations for the last night of the year. There are a few things to cross off the list like rethink our New Year’s Eve resolutions after another year of messing up, stock up the pantry with raisins, have the loved ones around, organize the fireworks and invite that friend good at blowing up things and… sort out the sparkling wine! People have different ways of celebrating the start of the new year depending on the culture and traditions, but one thing seems to be always in our hand after midnight regardless of who and where we are and it is a glass of sparkling wine. Bubbles seem to sparkle the moments of celebration and on this article we will explore the ‘when, what and why’ of this festive drink.

England or France? The paradox.

Just like many other happy accidents throughout the human history, sparkling wine could be the penicillin of the wine world as there are records of incidental fizziness since Biblical times. However, the product owes its existence mainly to the development of technology unrelated to the production of the wine itself. We must ignore all the faults, accidents and the effervescence attributed to the phases of the moon and focus on the year of 1662 when Christopher Merret stated to the Royal Society in London “our wine-coopers of recent times use vast quantities of sugar and molasses to all sorts of wines to make them drink brisk and sparkling”.

There is an erroneous believe that Dom Pérignon invented sparkling wine in the late 1690s, but Merret’s report a few decades earlier is the first documented proof that still wine was intentionally turned into sparkling by adding sugar and molasses and by that time only England had the required technology to make it: the ability to produce stronger glass and the reintroduction of cork as closures.

A strong glass bottle able to withstand the high pressure of sparkling wine is mandatory and England was able to produce it in the early 1600s by using coal-fired glass furnaces at much higher temperature instead of wood-fired ones used in France, only able to produce structurally weaker glass. Also, it is essential to use a closure able to withhold the pressure and back in the XVII century it was cork. Cork was lost during the decline of the Roman Empire and only rediscovered by France in 1685 at the earliest, but England was shipping bottled wine from France sealed with corks decades earlier in the XVI century.

England had advanced glass technology in the early XVII century, which led the country to surpass the French competition.

It is clear that England had the knowledge and the means to produce and preserve the effervescence of a sparkling wine, the paradox (and what makes everything much exciting!) is the fact that they were making it with wines shipped from… Champagne! The primary fermentation in this cold region in the north of France would prematurely stop because of the low temperatures late in the season and naturally restart a few months later in the warmer spring days.

The process

It took a few decades to get to the product with the characteristics as we know in our days, essentially to understand and optimize the science behind the effervescence and establish the relation between the sugar required to the second fermentation to produce a certain amount of carbon dioxide (pressure). In our days there are strict legislation to produce this special wine, with the OIV stating that a sparkling is a wine supersaturated in carbon dioxide (CO2) from an exclusive endogenous origin (secondary fermentation), resulting in an excess pressure of this gas in the bottle of at least 3.5bars at 20°C (68ºF) or 3.0bars for bottles less than 0.25L.

The production of sparkling wine can be separated in two main stages: base wine production and second fermentation/ageing. The base wine production follows the general principles of a white wine, with the particularity that the grapes are harvested earlier in the season to retain a higher acidity (essential to the freshness and balance) and have a lower sugar content (potential alcohol normally under 11%). Once musts have fermented to dryness and the wines are filtered, stabilized and eventually fined, they are ready to the second stage: blending, second fermentation and ageing.

Blending or preparing the cuvée is generally a critical moment to define the quality of the wine and to which winemakers pay great attention.

It consists on blending wines from different vintages, sites, varieties or even press fractions, to achieve desired characteristics and consistency. The cuvée is ready for the second fermentation once the tirage liquor is added: the required sugar to achieve 5-6bars of pressure in bottle (±4g/L → 1bar) and yeast.

Most of the sparkling wine, and particularly the premium quality sparkling, is produced by the Traditional Method or Méthode Champenoise (Champagne), where the second fermentation occurs in bottle. This is followed by ageing on lees for a certain period of time (variable), removal of yeast lees and sediments by riddling and disgorging, dosage and corking. The dosage permits topping up the bottles after disgorging and adjust the final desired sugar level by adding a more or less sweet wine/syrup (tirage liquor). Along with the production method, the final sugar level of the sparkling wine is the base of one of the classification systems:

Brut Nature – 0-3g/L
Extra Brut – 0-6g/L
Brut – 0-12g/L
Extra-dry – 12-17g/L
Dry – 17-32
Demi-sec – 32-50
Sweet (Doux) – more than 50g/L

The Traditional Method has the particularity that the bottle where the second fermentation occurs is same that reaches the consumer. There’s no discussion possible when it comes to the high quality wines produced by this method, notably the fine bubbles produced and the bouquet developed during ageing on lees, but it is labour intensive and time demanding and during the 20th century other methods and technologies were developed in order to minimize the production costs. In the Transfer Method the sparkling benefits from fermentation and ageing on lees in bottle, but riddling and disgorging steps are eliminated as the bottles are then emptied to a tank under isobaric pressure for filtration, dosage and bottling. The Charmat Method took another step forward on bringing the production costs down by allowing lower quality sparkling production entirely in stainless steel tanks, with the wine being bottled only when it is finished and ready for sale.

The Traditional Method is tipically employed in higher quality sparkling wines such as Champagne.

Innovation and future of sparkling wine

When it comes to new technologies developed in recent decades, I have to mention the use of immobilized yeast in sparkling wine production as the Portuguese company Proenol has pioneered the industrial production of immobilized yeast in the world. The immobilization of yeast in a calcium alginate matrix allows the wine to remain clear and when used in the Traditional Method it will shorten the riddling time from several days/weeks to a few seconds with the beads settling immediately.

Sparkling wine production worldwide is on the rise and has seen the biggest growth in terms of volume and value in recent years. Between 2003 and 2013 there was an increase in 40% of production and by 2017 it accounted for 8% by volume and 19% by value in the world wine trade.

I love a good sparkling, but I have to admit that I’m not the greatest enthusiast of bubbles. However, it was my passport to the wine world and I honestly find fascinating the whole process of traditional sparkling wine production and the short but intensive history of the wine. Won’t complain if I spend the first moments of 2019 sipping again ‘Millésime Bruto 2013’ by Ataíde Semedo, the last great Espumante that I had the pleasure to drink. From Bairrada, of course. Salut!

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/

 

The way human beings feed themselves strongly influences their physical and emotional balance. Meat products are an excellent source of nutrients and are widely consumed around the world. However, these products are also susceptible to chemical and microbiological deterioration, which creates health risks.

Consumption of contaminated food and water kills 1.8 million people annually. In addition, each person is wasting an average of 150kg of food per year, also due to lack of food conservation.

Packaged meat products arrive at the consumer’s house in good food safety conditions. However, food contamination is a serious concern at the post-opening stage of the package. It is thus urgent to create more advanced solutions of food preservation, which reduce the contamination and increase the shelf-life after the package is opened.

Sliced charcuterie may have an extended shelf-life with the developed technology.

A new technology for the preservation of charcuterie

Researchers at the University of Coimbra, Portugal, and Primor Charcutaria Prima developed a research project to address this problem. New surfactant and polymer systems were developed to promote longer shelf life through the incorporation of consumer safe edible coatings in the meat. Furthermore, this coating prevents the use of the protective N2/CO2 atmosphere in the packaging, which leads to the reduction of the amount of plastic volume used in the packaging, yielding a better environmental impact.

The various types of performed assays included: chemical, physical and microbiological tests to identify coatings with improved bacterial elimination, light scattering and rheology tests to identify the best suited coatings for spray application, and electron microscopy to compare the level of meat degradation with and without coating. Color, taste, texture and odor were continuously monitored throughout the project. After the laboratory tests, the best performance coatings were applied in semi-industrial environment.

This new results will make available to consumers a new generation of preservation for fresh meat products.