Racing pulses

by Donna Berry
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Black bean or lentil pulses can be used in chocolate brownies and other products.
 
Spreading the word

Consumer acceptance is increasing as people become more aware that pulses have been in various food items for decades.

The Global Pulse Confederation introduced the Pulse Brand and Made with Pulses seal at the Institute of Food Technologists’ 2016 annual meeting and Food Expo to raise awareness and educate consumers and industry. The brand and seal are available to food manufacturers, consumer packaged goods companies and the foodservice industry to use on packages and in promotions. Packaged products that contain pulses among the first five ingredients listed by weight and present at a minimum of 5% of the final formulation are eligible to apply to use the seal. Akin to other popular certifications, such as the Whole Grain Stamp and Gluten-Free Certified logo, the Pulse Brand and Made with Pulses seal can be used on qualifying product packaging and promotional materials.

“Increasing consumer and manufacturing awareness of the already existing presence of these ingredients in our foods may also remove potential barriers,” Ms. Majeski said. For example, soy flour has been in baked goods for decades. Cooked beans have been a staple for centuries; just look at the popularity of hummus. Ms. Majeski said that it seems only logical to start incorporating the nutritional, functional and economic benefits of such ingredients in baked goods, too.

MarJanie Kinney, product development manager, World Food Processing, said pulses in their milled, powdered form offer the functionality of flour, but with a protein and fiber benefit. For many pulses, that’s generally a 20 to 25% protein content and 10 to 30% fiber content, she explained.

“Aside from the obvious nutritional benefits, this is a clean-label means to diversifying the diets of consumers,” Ms. Kinney said.

 

Next, learn about the flavor challenges of pulses.

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