PATERSON, N.J. — More and more, consumers do not want to find artificial preservatives listed among the ingredients in the foods they serve their families. According to The NPD Group, a consumer research company, more than 30% of consumers said they are cautious about foods with preservatives, compared with 24% just 10 years ago.
Yet high-moisture foods like bread and cakes need some means of staving off the degradation caused by molds and other microorganisms. A variety of synthetic materials — with calcium propionate most often used — have provided such protection. Today, formulators seek natural choices instead.
J&K Ingredients, Inc. recommends its Bred-Mate as a clean label mold inhibitor. And later this year, the company will introduce a naturally fermented sorbic acid that acts as a mold inhibitor in cake applications.
“In the clean label movement, the industry was focused on bread products first, and now, they’re starting to think about the cake products as well,” said Nigel Weston, vice-president, R&D, J&K Ingredients. “That is where this new fermented sorbic acid comes into play.”
The acids contained in the company’s mold inhibitor ingredients are developed through a natural fermentation process. They can be described in the ingredient lists on package labels as “cultured wheat flour” or “fermented wheat flour.” They are certified kosher pareve and are non-G.M.O. A certified organic version of Bred-Mate was just introduced.
Rather than one-size-fits-all solutions, J&K offers its clean label mold inhibitors as lines of products tailored to different bakery applications. The usage level for Bred-Mate varies from 1% to 4% (flour weight basis) according to product needs, although a concentrated version used at 0.5% to 1.75% is also available. Bred-Mate Plus includes vinegar for pH control.
While hindering mold growth, these ingredients allow bakers to produce clean label baked goods with improved flavor and aroma, Mr. Weston observed.
“We are developing more efficient solutions for products with a higher moisture content and require a longer shelf life, such as flatbreads and tortillas,” Mr. Weston noted.
For more about J&K’s Bred-Mate and Cake-Mate, visit www.jkingredients.com.