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A new era of conscious consumption is creating a shift toward more sustainable ingredients and eye-catching colour palettes influenced by the natural world, according to GNT.

GNT, which supplies plant-based EXBERRY® colours, has identified “Regeneration Rising” as a key trend in the food and drink sector. The company’s analysis explores the growing global appreciation for the natural world and desire to protect the planet. This mindset is now intensifying the focus on the origins of raw materials and sustainable production.

The Regeneration Rising trend is also inspiring new colour palettes as brands seek to convey instinctive messages about how their products are created. The use of visually impactful colours that can be found growing on land and in the sea helps manufacturers to showcase products’ eco-credentials and build emotional connections with consumers.

GNT has identified three new colour directions in line with the trend. “Elevated Earth” involves earthy shades from red-browns and warm oranges to textured purples and inky teals, elevating products with an organic but premium look and feel. “Nature Lab” is about pushing the boundaries of what is considered natural and features a kaleidoscopic spectrum of green, pink, red, yellow, orange, and blue. Finally, “Wholesome Nostalgia” features yellows, greens, blues, peaches, and pinks that range from velvet-like to milky, translucent, muted, and dreamlike.

Dieuwertje Raaijmakers, Marketing Communications Specialist at GNT Group, said: “Consumers of all ages are developing a much stronger interest in sustainability and rebuilding their relationships with the natural world. To appeal to these shoppers, food and beverage companies have to showcase their commitment to the planet. Colour can play an important role in telling that story, helping brands create appealing products that send out strong visual signals about how they’re produced.”

GNT has set out an ambition to lead the food colouring industry on sustainability. The company creates its EXBERRY® colours from fruits, vegetables, and plants and has set out a series of ambitious targets to optimise its environmental and social impacts at every stage of the value chain.

GNT will open up an interactive “colour lab” for its plant-based EXBERRY® concentrates at Food Ingredients Europe (Frankfurt, 28-30 November 2023).

EXBERRY® Colouring Foods are edible concentrates made from non-GMO fruit, vegetables, and plants using physical processing methods such as chopping and boiling. They are available in more than 400 shades from across the whole rainbow and can be used in all food and drink categories.

At FiE 2023, GNT (stand 3.1G140) will showcase EXBERRY® concentrates’ versatility by inviting attendees to colour their own dairy, confectionery, and non-alcoholic beverages at special application stations.

The company’s dedicated in-house experts will also be available throughout the event to provide insights and advice into how EXBERRY® can meet consumer demand in different regions around the globe.

Petra Thiele, Managing Director at GNT Europa, said: “EXBERRY® allows manufacturers to achieve vibrant shades in almost any application while maintaining completely clean and clear labels. Our special ‘colour lab’ will give FiE visitors the chance to experiment with the possibilities for themselves and discover the incredible potential of our plant-based concentrates.”

Based on the concept of coloring food with food, EXBERRY® concentrates are classified as food ingredients rather than additives in the EU and many other parts of the world. They are also suitable for vegan, halal, and kosher diets.

To ensure the highest level of quality and year-round availability, GNT has a vertically integrated supply chain, with cultivation and harvesting monitored by GNT’s agricultural engineers.

GNT has published externally verified data showing it reduced the average carbon footprint of its plant-based EXBERRY® Colouring Foods by 19 % in the first year of its sustainability plan. The company becomes the first colouring foods supplier to issue a Greenhouse Gas Verification Statement as it aims to become the leader in its field on sustainability.

The statement details GNT’s carbon footprint from 2019 to 2021. The auditor SGS verified the emissions data according to the internationally recognised ISO14064 standard, which includes emissions from carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide across six different reporting categories. As a result, the company can now provide comprehensive, benchmarked information on EXBERRY® Colouring Foods’ organisational footprint to customers.

In 2022, GNT announced that it plans to achieve a total of 17 sustainability targets over the course of the decade. These include cutting the environmental footprint for EXBERRY® product ranges by 25 % between 2020 and 2030 as well as reducing its factories’ CO2-equivalent emissions by at least 50 %. The new figures show the company is making significant progress toward those aims. Production volumes saw a double-digit increase between 2020 and 2021, but GNT’s overall carbon footprint remained flat. This meant the average footprint per kilogram of EXBERRY® Colouring Foods decreased by nearly a fifth over the course of the year.

Rutger de Kort, Sustainability Manager at GNT Group, said: “We’re committed to setting new standards on sustainability and the Greenhouse Gas Verification Statement highlights the work we’ve done so far. This external verification for our emissions data enables us to build trust and communicate our efforts in a truly transparent manner.”

The Greenhouse Gas Verification Statement shows GNT’s total carbon footprint dropped by 3,427 metric tons to 38,656 between 2019 and 2021. This is largely due to the use of green electricity at its production sites, which represents an important step in its efforts to reduce CO2-equivalent emissions at its factories by 50 %. The biggest contributors to GNT’s carbon footprint are direct emissions from natural gas and indirect emissions related to the purchase of heat and steam. Emissions related to purchased goods – such as raw materials, ingredients, and packaging – and waste streams are also important factors.

Rutger de Kort added: “The move to green electricity has delivered major improvements, but we need to go further to achieve our goals. Our main focus now is trying to end our reliance on gas to generate heat and steam. We’re already working on ways to electrify the process, including the use of industrial heat pumps and other new technologies, such as filtration. We’re also using the new data to identify further possibilities to cut our carbon footprint in areas including transportation and purchased goods.”

Suitable for almost any food and drink application, EXBERRY® Colouring Foods are made from non-GMO fruits, vegetables, and plants using physical processing methods. The crops are grown by farmers working as part of GNT’s vertical supply chain using sustainable methods.

Fermentalg, the French expert in the microalgae bioindustry, announces that it has reached the final technical milestone in the scale-up of Galdieria Blue Extract1 – the acid-stable natural blue food colour developed in partnership with DDW, part of Givaudan. The completion of the industrialisation work allows the partners to engage in the initial commercialisation stage of this new product, an alternative to synthetic blue colours for low pH food and beverage applications.

As part of the partnership agreement signed in June 2020, and in order to support the launch of this new colour, the achievement of this second milestone triggers an additional payment of EUR 1 million from DDW to Fermentalg in the form of a supplier’s advance repayable on future product deliveries. The first pre-commercial orders are expected before the end of the year.

In this context, Fermentalg will initiate the industrial transfer and production with a leading German toll manufacturer, in line with the strategy to increase and diversify its production capacity.

In parallel with the industrial transfer and pre-commercialisation efforts, applications with the European Food Safety Authority and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are being pursued to obtain regulatory authorisations in the second half of 2023.

1originating from the Blue Origins® joint development program

EXBERRY® colouring foods supplier GNT has published a major new report that sets out its plans to become the leader in its field on sustainability.

Each year, GNT produces more than 11,500 metric tons of EXBERRY® concentrates from edible fruit, vegetables, and plants – enough to colour over 40 billion servings of food and drink.

To ensure the company is fit for the future, it has unveiled a sustainability roadmap for 2030 to optimize its environmental and social impacts across its global operations. The full plans feature in GNT’s new ‘Sustainability Report 2021,’ which also includes detailed information on its performance last year.

Frederik Hoeck, Managing Director at GNT Group B.V., said: “Since GNT was founded in 1978, we’ve been revolutionising the food colouring industry with our plant-based EXBERRY® solutions. Today, we’re known for offering the most natural solutions on the market. We now want to take this to the next level and lead the industry in sustainability too. As a family business, sustainability and caring for future generations have always been part of our DNA.”

GNT’s sustainability strategy is built around four key pillars: better products, better operations, better agriculture, and better for people. It features a total of 17 targets for 2030, including cutting the Product Environmental Footprint for EXBERRY® product ranges by 25 % and reducing the intensity of factories’ CO2-equivalent emissions by at least 50 %.

Furthermore, due to GNT’s strong vertical integration, the company will soon be in a position to report on greenhouse gas emissions for 80 % of EXBERRY® products. Covering scopes 1, 2 and 3, this data will provide important advantages for food and beverage brands as it will enable them to calculate final products’ total environmental footprint.

Rutger de Kort, Sustainability Manager at GNT Group B.V., said: “We’re positioning our EXBERRY® brand as the most sustainable food colouring solution on the market. GNT is committed to driving industry standards higher than ever before by providing colours that deliver on cost-in-use, performance, naturalness, and sustainability. Achieving our goals won’t be easy, but we’re already making excellent progress across multiple areas.”

To read GNT’s ‘Sustainability report 2021,’ click here:

Measurement of the colour of clear and hazy juices (Spectrophotometric method)

Principle. The colour of a juice is an important quality criterion. In some juices a relatively light colour is expected for a good quality, such as apple or grape juices. However, in red/black juices a deep red/purple colour is expected in good quality juices. The colour of a juice can be determined spectrophotometrically by measurement of its absorbance or transmission in the visible region of the spectrum. In yellow/brown products e.g. apple, pear, white grape juices the absorbance is measured at 430 nm. In red/black juices e.g. blackcurrant, raspberry etc. the absorbance is measured at 520 nm.

The text has been slightly revised to clarify part of the procedure.

The revised method can be access via the methods section of the IFU website

Mountain Dew, a PepsiCo International brand, has launched a special edition 33cl package featuring fluorescent inks in the Middle East. Designed to attract consumer attention and boost sales in the hot summer season, the ultra-bright green colour on the can accentuates the bold Mountain Dew logo and reinforces the brand’s image.

The neon colour glows in the dark, adding the elements of fun, surprise and interactivity to the packaging for this iconic brand. The inks were applied to beverage cans manufactured at Crown’s facilities in the United Arab Emirates and Jordan at full line speed, ensuring productivity levels were optimized. Crown also worked closely with PepsiCo and ink supplier INX to secure the necessary regulatory approvals. The neon cans were sold in the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Lebanon, Qatar and Jordan markets from August 2018 until.

Metal has impeccable sustainability credentials – cans are 100% and infinitely recyclable – with no loss of properties, making it an important contributor to the circular economy. Once the containers enter the material-to-material loop, where they get recycled again and again, they can return to store shelves as new beverage cans in as little as 60 days.