SELAH, WASH. — Tree Top is expanding its dried fruit ingredients portfolio with the launch of Drum Dried Pumpkin Flake Powder.

The powder is made from Washington-grown pumpkins that are pureed and dried without any preservatives. It may be used to naturally enhance flavor and color in a range of food and beverage applications, including smoothies, soups, baked foods, snack bar toppings, cereal and pet foods. The ingredient also may serve as a replacement for wet pumpkin puree or a healthy alternative to flour and sugar, according to Tree Top.

“Pumpkin is a natural fit with our other wholesome fruit ingredients,” said Jeannie Swedberg, director of customer development and marketing at Tree Top. “We’re seeing growing demand for plant-based ingredients with functional benefits. Pumpkin is not only sweet and delicious, it’s packed with an impressive array of phytonutrients and antioxidants that are associated with wellness benefits, such as immune and digestive health. Rather than just a seasonal ingredient, we see pumpkin becoming valued and used as a year-round super fruit.”

Tree Top’s Drum Dried Pumpkin Flake Powder contains high levels of vitamin C and vitamin A, along with folate and iron, which have shown to help support a healthy immune system by supporting physical barriers, such as the skin, and by boosting production of antibodies. The dietary fiber in pumpkin is a prebiotic that supports digestion and immunity.

Pumpkin also contains alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin, which combat free radicals and prevent cell damage, and carotenoids, which can help reduce the risk of eye disease, according to Tree Top.