Egg supplies tightened this spring and into the summer because bird flu hit hard, killing nearly one-third of the egg-laying flock that supplies the processed egg market. Bakers sought answers to their supply and price problems by turning to egg extenders, supplements and replacers. In this exclusive Baking & Snack Q&A, Kathy Sargent, Manager, Bakery Applications, Corbion Caravan, Lenexa, KS, describes what bakers can expect from these alternative ingredient choices.

Baking & Snack: What has been the experience of bakers using egg replacers/extenders from Corbion Caravan?

Kathy Sargent: As bakers move away from high egg usage and implement Corbion Caravan egg replacers, they are experiencing a variety of benefits. Initial drivers to make the change are the reduction in input cost resulting in increased profitability. The advantage of Corbion Caravan egg replacers is the functionality. Bakeries experience processing tolerance, stable product volume, and resilience while consumers enjoy the high quality eating experience that they are accustomed to with moist textures and pleasant product flavors.

What changes in formulation are required to accomplish this?

Bakery formulations are very diverse and range in complexity. Many formulas will be direct replacement of eggs to egg replacers. Baked goods that are heavily dependent on egg products for functionality and high levels of reduction are targeted, adjustments may be necessary. Corbion Caravan’s technical team is experienced in such formula optimization.

Do you think the adoption of egg replacers will be a permanent change in bakery formulations?

Many bakeries will make the conversion to egg replacers permanent. The type of functional blends that are delivered with the Corbion Caravan egg replacers provide high quality processing tolerance, ease of handling, and premium finished good quality. In addition to first-class bakery products, egg replacers deliver stable price positioning verses the volatile market of egg products.

Breaking news: An announcement sent June 18 by Corbion Caravan to the baking industry called attention to two egg replacement solutions for bakery goods:

Bro-Eg replaces whole eggs and acts as an extender. It replaces up to 50% of whole eggs in cakes and batters, and up to 100% in yeast-raised products.

Cara-Eg is designed to replace whole eggs by functioning as an egg stabilizer and extender. It replaces 25 to 50% of whole eggs in sweet goods and offers total egg replacement in yeast-raised products.

Editor’s notes: For a slideshow of egg replacer ingredients, click here. The July 2015 issue of Baking & Snack carries full coverage of the egg situation and egg replacer ingredients.