KANSAS CITY — Fortifying grain-based foods offers marketing opportunity — and possibly formulating frustration.
Consumers may look favorably upon “good source” or “excellent source” claims on products, and more reason to fortify appeared when the Food and Drug Administration in the May 27, 2016, issue of the Federal Register said it would require the declaration of vitamin D and potassium on the Nutrition Facts Panel.
Still, formulators need a large enough level of a vitamin or a mineral to achieve a claim, and too large a dose may lead to sensory issues.
“Vitamins can typically contribute flavor and aroma to products,” said Patricia Catauro, principal food scientist, nutritional ingredients for Watson, Inc., West Haven, Conn. “So it’s important to perform a sensory evaluation early in the development process. There are often a range of options available to address sensory issues, including encapsulation of the nutrients themselves, addition of flavor maskers or adjustment of other formula components.”
Nutrient stability also may be a challenge.
“Vitamins and minerals are vulnerable to losses in both processing and storage,” she said. “It’s important to assess your nutrient content at all stages of product manufacture and to perform a shelf life assessment on products in their final packaging.
“Understanding the mechanism for nutrient loss in a given product can help you tailor a solution to address. Typical measures to improve stability would be adjustment to processing parameters, improvement of packaging and encapsulation of nutrients. Many manufacturers also choose to incorporate small shelf life overages into their products to account for any storage lability and ensure delivery of claimed nutrient levels at the end of shelf life.”