WILMINGTON, DEL. — Ashland Specialty Ingredients has launched Aquacel GSA and Aquacel GSH, which are two cellulose gum products designed to help supplement or replace guar gum. They are cost-effective alternatives for beverage, bakery and dairy applications, according to Ashland Specialty Ingredients, based in Wilmington and a commercial unit of Ashland Inc.

“Volatility in guar availability and pricing has left food manufacturers scrambling for a replacement,” said Laurie Kronenberg, new product leader, Nutrition Specialties for Ashland Specialty Ingredients. “In the U.S., guar gums are being used in the oil and gas industry for lubrication. Using guar in this manner is not new, but the recent surge in horizontal drilling technology has increased the demand for guar gum significantly.”

Aquacel GSA and Aquacel GSH were developed to have synergy with guar and provide higher viscosity in liquid phase, moisture holding, fast hydration development and practical application by dry mixing. Synergies have been found in guar gum:cellulose gum ratios ranging from 80:20 to 40:60. A high viscosity across a range of blend ratios allows for reduced doses of guar gum in the final formulation.

“Less dosing means less guar is needed during this supply shortage and that there is a cost-effective alternative to escalating prices of guar,” Ms. Kronenberg said.