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Innovation award winners tap clean label trend

June 25, 2017

IFT 2017 Food Expo Innovation Award

Three of the four winning entries of the 2017 Food Expo Innovation Awards are food ingredients that capitalize on the clean labeling trend.

Glanbia Nutritionals (booth 2240) won the award for its BevEdge Pea Protein. The ingredient, which is high in lysine, arginine, and glutamine, uses a patent-pending agglomeration technology that delivers instant dispersability in liquids, an exceptionally smooth mouthfeel, and a neutral flavor profile in powdered drink mixes. BevEdge Pea Protein overcomes clumping problems that occur with conventional pea protein and its clean label profile uses no lecithin. It can be applied to whey-based, milk-based, casein-based, and plant-based formulations including hydrolysates.

Ingredion Incorporated (booth 2056) and AGT Food and Ingredients Inc. (booth 3647) were honored for their Clean Taste Pulse Ingredients. Co-developed by Ingredion and AGT Foods, a physical process reduces the beany, grassy, and other undesirable flavors in pulse flours and pulse proteins without affecting protein content and quality, overall nutritional quality, and functionality. This flavor improvement enables food manufacturers to use the ingredients at increased levels in current applications such as pasta, snacks, bakery, and crisps, and in new applications such as alternative dairy, beverage, confectionery, and savory products.

Salt of the Earth (booth 5019) garnered the 2017 IFT Food Expo Innovation Award for its Mediterranean Umami BOLD, which is a unique combination of plant extracts and sea salt that are high in umami flavor compounds. The all natural and organic-compliant ingredient enables sodium reduction and flavor enhancement in a variety of applications such as meats, dips, dressings, soups, sauces, and ready-to-eat meals. Sodium reduction can range from 25% to 45%, allowing for “reduced sodium” claims. 

The fourth winning entry advances quality control for food manufacturers through simple and rapid fat analysis. CEM Corporation (booth 2214) captured the 2017 IFT Food Expo Innovation Award for its ORACLE Universal Fat Analyzer, which can accurately determine the fat content of any food product in 30 seconds with no method development, calibration, or sample validation necessary. Accuracy is comparable to standard extraction methods. The highly repeatable and simple-to-operate analyzer is designed for use in R&D and technical centers as well as production labs near the plant floor.

The 2017 IFT Food Expo Innovation Awards were presented to the five companies at the awards ceremony on Sunday evening by President-Elect Designate Michele Perchonok. “Now in its 11th year, the Food Expo Innovation Awards program is a showcase for amazing advancements in our profession,” said Perchonok. “Exclusive to companies exhibiting at the IFT17 Food Expo in Las Vegas, these awards honor outstanding innovation in products, ingredients, technologies, instrumentation, equipment, and services that were commercially introduced since January 1, 2016.”       

A panel of eight jurors from academia, government, and industry with wide expertise in research & product development, processing & packaging technology, and food safety selected the five companies and their innovations from 41 qualified entries. Judging criteria included degree of innovation, technical advancement, benefits to food manufacturers and consumers, and scientific merit.