Developing tasty food products with a prebiotic plus

Consumers worldwide continue to take a long-term approach to health. Approximately half of global consumers are aware of bacteria within the gut that is beneficial to health and a similar proportion wants to address their digestive health in the near future.[i]

Prebiotic chicory root fibres provide important benefits for gut health, while also allowing food manufacturers to improve the nutritional and technical properties of their products.

More prebiotic fibre, less sugar and fat

Adding BENEO’s chicory root fibres, Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose, to food formulations not only allows for fibre enrichment but also enables to reduce sugar or fat content in products like cereal bars, cookies, candy, chocolate, yoghurt or ice cream.

Manufacturers can therefore target a wide range of products that deliver prebiotic benefits to everyone from young children to the elderly while delivering better-for-you options in indulgent categories.

The BENEO-Technology Center has created a wide variety of recipe formulations with the company’s chicory root fibres, which are available in liquid and powder form and even as an organic variant.

Being soluble, Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose allow for easy processing without any major changes in the production processes. As a dispersible powder, Orafti® Inulin can be used in moist or semi-moist food categories as a fat replacer.

It can stabilise water into a creamy structure with a similar mouthfeel to fat, enabling the development of fat-reduced products without compromising on taste and texture.

For example, this texturising property of Orafti® Inulin allows to create ice cream with 30 per cent less fat than a full-fat reference product, while ensuring good creaminess, body, scoopability and a pleasant taste.

Chicory root fibres can also be used in fiber-enriched cereal bars, for example in the binding syrup or as a humectant, helping bars and other products remain soft over time.

Tests by the BENEO-Technology Center have shown that these prebiotic fibres can reduce the sugar content in a cereal bar by 30 per cent. Adding Orafti® Inulin to a chocolate recipe, also allows to reduce sugars while ensuring a nice texture and good snap.

Gut microbiota support with prebiotics

BENEO’s chicory root fibres, Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose, are plant-based, natural, and recognized as two of the very few proven prebiotic fibres by ISAPP (International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics).

In fact, 3 out of 5 (61 per cent) consumers globally are interested in prebiotics today, compared to 51 per cent in 2018.[ii] As preferred nutrients for helpful bacteria in the gut, chicory root fibres have been scientifically shown to promote health.

For example, they support regularity, and – by lowering glycaemic responses after food intake – blood glucose management. In the European Union, BENEO’s chicory root fibre inulin has an authorised 13.5 health claim concerning digestive health and regularity support that can be communicated on-pack.

With the help of prebiotic chicory root fibres, food and drink manufacturers worldwide are well placed to answer the growing consumer demand for healthier but tasty products.

To learn more from BENEO, visit here.

[i] FMCG Gurus: Understanding the Prebiotic Market in 2022 and Beyond

[ii] HealthFocus International Trends Studies 2018, 2022

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