New range of healthy kids’ snacks

The demand for healthy snacks has risen dramatically, and Whole Kids are taking advantage of parents desire to provide their children with healthy snacks and additions to their lunchboxes.

Whole Kids has introduced a new products including Organic Cheese and Low Salt Corn Chips and Organic fruit juices.

Monica Waters, Co-Founder of Whole Kids says, “We have seen the demand for our products grow 50% since back-to-school 2007. The demand increase has been across the board. Our original range is now stocked in over 500 stores including Harris Farm grocers, IGA supermarkets and most leading organic food stores. Plus we have introduced new products to meet the needs of parents whose kids are notoriously fussy eaters.”

Whole Kids products are free of preservatives, additives and genetically modified ingredients.

In addition, the company has recently launched a nut-free and gluten-free range.

“Our new range was actually developed in response to pleas from concerned parents. We‘ve had an overwhelming response to our products because people are just so grateful that they don’t have to search for nasty hidden ingredients.”

Whole Kids was founded in 2005 by Monica Waters and James Meldrum after spending several years researching the demand for healthier organic snacks for kids.

Whole Kids now stocks ten different products including juices, popcorn, fruit bars and corn chips.

www.wholekids.com.au

Enzyme aids product formation and shelf life

Hydrosol’s supplies a meat-binding system from the MeatZym series, a new development in the field of Stabilising Systems which makes it possible to create innovative convenience meat products conforming to all requirements of safety, quality, stability and economy from meat cuttings or minced meat.

Besides the classic minced-meat variants like rissoles and meat-burgers, dumplings and meat balls, meat slices and kebabs are becoming more and more popular as restructured products.

The MeatZym series is a compound consisting of cold-gelling proteins and hydrocolloids, individual emulsifying and stabilising components and additives with an antimicrobial effect, which assist shaping, gel formation and adhesion and prolong the shelf-life of the products.

How it works

The powdered product is mixed with water and worked into the meat mass.

The mass is then filled into skins or moulds.

Once gel formation is complete, the piece of meat can be cut and prepared for cooking as required. Meat slices can be marinaded or coated with breadcrumbs, for example.

MeatZym fresh is suitable for restructured meat products including steaks and escallops, kebabs, shashlik and canned goulash, and also fish fingers and chicken nuggets.

Tailor-made formulations can also be developed to meet customers’ specific requirements, enabling manufacturers to exploit the market with creative new products.

Hydrosol Produktionsgesellschaft is a member of the Stern-Wywiol Gruppe.

For further information, contact Anne Bünting.

All-natural food protection

Danisco has launched a new label — Care4U — an extensive all-natural range of food protection solutions.

The company describes the label as a dedicated approach to helping the food industry enhance its safety image while addressing the end consumer trend towards natural labelling.

There is a current trend in the food industry toward clean labels that do not list artificial additives.

As such, natural food protection solutions account for about 25% of the global one billion Euro market for food protectants and an annual growth rate of 6% to 8%.

Danisco points to the fact that synthetic preservatives have been linked to various allergies, increased disease risk and the development of antibiotic resistance as reasons for the rise in natural solutions.

The label specifically targets the fresh dairy, cheese, meat, soup, sauces, dressings, oils and fats, baking and beverage sectors.

Danisco is offering customers who enter a strategic partnership with them access to the complete Care4U package, including a website containing scientific documentation of the protectants’ functionalities and benefits.

Expert assistance with applications and local food regulations will also be available.

www.danisco.com

Where is health & wellness heading?

Food manufacturers have taken note of consumers’ unceasing desire for food products that offer them health benefits and throughout 2007 have produced a host of successful products.

In particular, low-fat or ‘lite’ products, low-alcohol beverages, fortified products and those containing low sugar and salt levels.

So which area within the health and wellness sector will be high on food manufacturers’ agendas in 2008?

Organic products

The organic and all-natural movements have built momentum, and owners of processed food brands have addressed this by producing ranges containing few or no additives, while sales of organic produce in Australia are increasing.

Following on from this, an opportunity presents itself for manufacturers to produce a much greater range of organic processed foods.

In Europe and the US, such products abound, from organic jams and preserves, through baked beans and canned goods to baked goods and frozen ready meals.

Geriatric health products

Meanwhile, as the baby boom generation reaches their autumn years, the market for products catering to their specific nutritional needs offers great rewards to manufacturers who exploit it successfully.

Humans, as with pets, require different minerals, vitamins and nutrients at different stages of their life.

So which will bring food processors success in 2008?

Vote in this week’s online poll to have your say, as well as drive future editorial online and in the magazine.

Industry update: growth predicted for bread and biscuits

While the bread manufacturing industry is a consolidated and mature domestic market, which has experienced a revenue decrease of approximately 0.1% per annum over the past five years, future growth is expected as a result of increased export opportunities, innovations in ingredients and processing, and new product development.

In fact, IBISWorld predicts that growth in industry revenue is expected to average 3% between 2007-08 and 2011-12, bringing annual revenue to $2276.2 million by June 2012.

While bread manufacturers have historically focused on supplying the domestic market — the highly perishable nature of bread products and the low unit value of bread making export unattractive — exports in the past five years have risen by an average of 14.7% per annum and are expected to increase in the future.

Rising incomes in Africa and Asia will lead to diversity in their diet, resulting in greater consumption of products like bread.

Australian manufacturers will be able to take greater advantage of their reputation as safe food producers, with international health and safety standards becoming more stringent.

The supply of longer lasting bread products such as breadcrumbs to export markets will allow the industry to be competitive with foreign bakeries that provide bread daily.

Innovation and product development are also tipped as growth opportunities although there is insufficient funding of research and development for new functional bread products in Australia, making commercialisation of high-technology products difficult.

Manufacturers have benefited from responding to consumer demand for healthier bread products by offering greater variety, a trend that will continue.

According to IBISWorld, one of the greatest growth areas has been functional breads, particularly enriched or fortified breads, which are growing at a rate of 10% to 15% annually.

The production of organic bread using organically grown cereals and avoiding artificial additives is also gaining momentum.

While growth in the industry is also expected to lie in product development, particularly products in a premium price range as consumers show an increasing willingness to buy higher quality specialty products, demand for generic goods is also growing as consumers on low incomes become less brand conscious.

Mixed bag for biscuits

Dominated by foreign ownership, the profitability of Australia’s biscuit market is threatened by the ongoing consolidation of the retail food-client base.

The continuing reduction in the number of retail buyers and growth of the giant supermarket chains will pose a similar threat to all food manufacturing industries.

While the biscuit industry experienced a 0.5% decline in revenue in 2006-07 from the previous year, it is expected to grow at an average rate of 0.6% over the next five years.

Main factors contributing to growth include the development of low-fat product ranges, export opportunities in Asia and innovative packaging formats that increase shelf-life and reduce breakage during transit, making them ideal for export.

While the industry is dominated by two major companies, smaller firms are finding success in the market by appealing to niche groups of consumers with specialty gourmet biscuits, both savoury and sweet.

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