Vitamins and minerals endure as a common indicator to consumers that a food is going to support their health. Enriched flour reintroduces vitamins and minerals that are removed during milling or not naturally found in wheat. But fortifying with vitamins and minerals can go beyond enrichment.

“By adding vitamins and minerals to bread, bakers are able to offer a more nutritious product providing micronutrients commonly found in fruits, vegetables and other whole foods, but which are not naturally found in grain flour, yeast or other traditional bread ingredients,” said Shamla Moodley, marketing manager, Lallemand.

Enriched yeast ingredients contribute vital nutrients to bread in a way that fits naturally in the formulation. Lallemand’s vitamin D yeast and mineral-enriched yeasts add selenium, chromium, zinc, iron and magnesium. All of these have been shown to offer some support to the immune system.

According to the company, studies have shown that bread baked with vitamin D yeast can raise levels of 25 hydroxyvitamin D in the blood, which is used to measure the amount of vitamin D in the blood. Other studies show that vitamin D2 yeast is as bioavail-able as synthetic vitamin D3.

“With mineral yeast ingredients, the Saccharomyces cerevisiae (baker’s) yeast provides a digestible whole food matrix composed of protein, fiber and carbohydrate,”

Ms. Moodley explained. “During fermentation and growth, this matrix may form a complex with the mineral to create a more bio-available source, which can be optimally delivered to the body through the consumption of the bread.”

Vitamin C has almost a cult following among consumers when it comes to its immunity-supporting properties. Plant-based sources of vitamin C like acerola can introduce it into formulations.

“In addition to acerola, there are other fruits associated with immunity that have spiked in popularity, like elderberry,” said Alison Pomaville, ingredient application scientist, Martin Bauer. “These fruits are available in a variety of forms, but a powder extract is ideal for baked goods since it can be easily incorporated into flour or other dry ingredients and mixed into batter and dough.”

She warned, however, that vitamin C becomes unstable when heated, so bakers need to accommodate that instability with over-ages on dosing.

IFPC offers bakers vitamins A, D and E, the last being an antioxidant available in a water-soluble format. The company can also supplement bakery formulations with vitamin B complexes and flours enriched with iron, calcium and zinc.

Other plant-based ingredients can provide a healthy halo that consumers associate with improved immunity. Martin Bauer offers bakers apple cider vinegar, blueberry, ginger, green tea, hibiscus, lemon balm and rose hips.

“When formulating with these plant-based ingredients, it’s important to keep in mind that the right use level is different for every application,” Ms. Pomaville explained.

This article is an excerpt from the July 2020 issue of Baking & Snack. To read the entire feature on fortification, click here.