Monthly Archives

December 2018

BLOG: International Citrus and Beverage Conference (ICBC) Insights: Interview

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International Citrus and Beverage Conference Fiberstar speakingThe annual International Citrus and Beverage Conference draws industry leaders together to discuss the latest advances and challenges within the citrus and beverage industry. President & CEO, John Haen of Fiberstar provides some insights about its importance to the industry, Fiberstar’s participation and speaking take-aways.

 

 

Q1: What is the International Citrus Beverage Conference (ICBC) and who attends this conference?

This annual conference https://conference.ifas.ufl.edu/citrus/ discusses key topics relative to global juice and beverage technology. This year, the conference focused on updates in quality and consumer testing, FSMA regulations, processing plant technology and market insights regarding the beverage category. The audience is comprised of industry leaders, R&D teams, managerial members and partners who are affiliated with the food, beverage and citrus industries.

Q2: Why is the ICBC important to the industry?

The ICBC is important to the beverage and citrus industry because it is a meeting of the brightest minds from varying disciplines who are intimate with the topics at hand. The conference not only shares up-to-date information and news, but also, gives attendees time to share ideas and experiences among each other. This information sharing keeps the beverage and citrus industry ahead of the curve.

Q3: Why does Fiberstar participate in the ICBC?

Fiberstar, Inc. is an active member of the citrus industry. Fiberstar partners with the citrus juice processors to procure citrus fiber raw material. This raw material is byproduct of the juicing industry. In the past, the byproduct was sent off to animal feed. However, today, Fiberstar uses the byproduct to create higher value products like Citri-Fi® natural citrus fiber for the food and beverage industry.

By participating in the ICBC, Fiberstar increases the awareness about using citrus byproduct for higher value products. The company also stays in tune to the latest news and technology in the citrus processing industry which supports the company’s mission and strategy. And the team networks with other attendees to develop future partnerships.

Q4: Why was Fiberstar chosen to attend and speak at this conference?

Fiberstar was chosen to speak at this conference because of our expertise in citrus byproduct use which is on trend with upcycling and recycling initiatives globally. Our patented process uses citrus byproduct to create a highly functional citrus fiber that provides high water holding and emulsification properties to the food and beverage industry. This natural citrus fiber improves food products quality and nutrition and reduces costs in addition to cleaning up the label declaration. We are also considered innovators as we continue to pioneer new processing methods to create new, functional, clean label, plant-based ingredients which is also trending in the market today.

Q5: What did the audience take away from the Fiberstar talk?

The audience learned how Citri-Fi citrus fiber is produced from citrus byproduct and how the patented process opens up the fibrous matrix to provide high water holding capacity, emulsification and gelling properties.

Citri-Fi’s functionalities are used in food and beverage products to improve quality and texture. This natural fiber benefits the following food products:

  • Beverages: improves mouthfeel, extends pulp, improves stabilization and texture
  • Bakery: retains moisture, improve freshness over time, reduces egg or fat, and prevents blow-outs in bakery fillings
  • Meat, Poultry & Seafood: increase yields, reduces purge, improves juicy texture
  • Dressing & Sauces: extends tomato solids in sauces, reduces syneresis (water separation), emulsifies and improves freeze/thaw stability
  • Dairy: reduces syneresis, extends pectin, emulsifies, thickens and improves texture
  • Pet Food & Treats: strengthens, binds, reduces crumbling and improves texture of biscuits, semi-moist treats and injection molded bones

Citri-Fi citrus fiber is used to clean up labels to improve label declaration. Citri-Fi can be labeled as citrus fiber, citrus flour or dried citrus pulp which resonate well in the natural food markets.

Fiberstar’s business model supports sustainability from origin to end product. Our products are responsibly sourced from citrus byproduct, produced using no chemicals and improves food products nutritional profiles.

Fiberstar continues to work with industry and academia to not only create new processes but also to find new uses for citrus byproduct. Our company is dedicated to increasing citrus fiber awareness and teaching the industry how to use it to improve their products.

BLOG: Natural Nut and Seed Butters – Managing Separation

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nut butters and applesNatural nut butters entered the market as an alternative to peanut butter. Frequently, the “butter” composition is at risk of separating, which will compromise its perceived quality with consumers. Natural citrus fibers like Citri-Fi can bind oil and water naturally due to its hydrophobic/hydrophilic fibrous composition and high surface area.

Author: Dr. Kurt Villwock, Ph.D.

Despite its reputation for being nutrient dense, peanut butter is a longtime staple in the marketplace as a good source of plant protein and satiety – not to mention it has a satisfying, cravable flavor.  Childhood allergy awareness has spiked in recent times and peanuts are one of the top eight allergens of concern.  As a result, alternative natural seed or nut butter spreads such as sunflower, almond, cashew and hazelnut have emerged to provide consumers with more options.  This along with the protein enrichment craze unlocked new opportunities to spice up the savory and sweet spreads aisle.

Nut and Seed Spread Challenges & Solutions

One of the issues with natural nut or seed butters is that the unsaturated native fat, which is liquid at room temperature, tends to separate from the ground solids easily. As a result, separation in the jar is visible making consumers question the product quality. Forcing the consumer to remix the product before consumption is a messy inconvenience that may negatively impact the consumer experience and therefore sales.

While there are time-tested additives that can prevent oil separation such as lecithins, mono- and diglycerides and other traditional emulsifiers, these ingredients do not currently enjoy a clean label perception from consumers.  In reality, there are precious few options for natural, clean label emulsifiers.  A surprisingly powerful clean label ingredient, Citri-Fi citrus fiber, is one such emulsifier.  It comes from the byproducts of the citrus juicing industry and is both a strong water binder and a strong oil binder.

Ironically, in a high oil containing product, Citri-Fi can bind oil better if it has just a small amount of water present.  As shown in this recent trial, where about 2% water addition on top of 5% Citri-Fi citrus fiber essentially eliminates oil separation without losing that nice peanut butter spreadability and texture.

Different Peanut Butter Spreads at Varying Citri-Fi LevelsWater Activity Effects

Addition of water does negatively affect the water activity (Aw) of the nut butter. The control had an Aw of 0.2, whereas the Aw of the sample with 2% water added was about 0.4.  This is below the threshold for microbial growth, and within ideal range for reduced lipid oxidation as seen in the classic water activity diagram below (Labuza, 1970).  This means, the small amount of water added, along with the Citri-Fi 100FG, may have a positive impact on the shelf-life, flavor, and quality of the finished product.
Water Activity Graph used to reference nut butters

Looking to improve your nut or seed butter? If you have questions or would like further information, please contact techsupport@fiberstar.net.