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Fi Europe & Ni, from 28 to 30 November in Frankfurt, bundles innovation, market knowledge and expert know-how to meet Clean Label demands

What started as a trend is now the standard: Rising consumer demand for Clean Label ingredients has been a huge influence on the food industry for several years now. In order to offer suitable solutions for this growing market, producers of colours and flavours have committed major investments in creating natural alternatives to synthetic materials. Food ingredients Europe & Natural ingredients 2017 offers a clear overview of a sector that has developed like few others in the food and ingredients industries.
Solutions for an expanding and complex market

What began in the ‘80s with initial concerns about synthetic colours in food has led to today’s dominating demand for natural colours. As a result, nearly 60 per cent of the total food colours market is now comprised of natural solutions, according to Future Market Insights.

In parallel, Clean Label has affected the global flavours market, and both colour and flavour producers have responded with innovation and investments in R&D . “Consumers are highly sceptical about artificial additives, especially those carrying E-numbers. They avoid products with long, complex ingredient lists and have a strong wish for greater naturalness in food”, says Guido de Jager, Head of Group Marketing at GNT. For suppliers, natural colours and flavours today are part of their standard portfolio. Nevertheless, achieving successful results while reverting back to all things natural, is far from simple. Attaining Clean Label status requires standardised raw materials of the highest quality – a challenge when it comes to ingredients made by Mother Nature. In addition, stability concerns still exist around long-term or high temperature warehousing. Paul Janthial, director of the Food & Beverage Business Unit at Naturex, says: “Every natural pigment has its own specific properties in terms of heat or pH sensitivity, light stability and solubility. In order to find the right solution efficiently, the most important thing is not to focus only on the desired shade or color intensity but to share from the very beginning all relevant details about the application matrix and the process applied to it.”

With thousands of products presented in the colours and flavours categories and a high quality conference program, Fi Europe & Ni is the roadmap for the whole natural solutions sector. Barbara Lezzer, European Marketing Director at Sensient Flavours, says: “Consumers nowadays shouldn’t have to accept a compromise between health and taste – they want it all. This is why the focus of all of our research and development is to offer natural solutions based on our proprietary extraction and taste modulation technologies. FIE gives us the opportunity to share our latest developments and capabilities, to bring new product concepts to life in various sweet beverage categories.”

Fi conference and exhibitors: innovation at a glance

During the four-day Fi conference, visitors can experience concentrated knowledge and market insights. On 28 November under the headline “Clean Label & Natural Ingredients”, experts from university and industry as well as market analysts will explore subjects such as the consumer’s view of Clean Label, and technical topics from stability issues in natural colours to reformulation. “Reduction & Reformulation” on 30 November will cover sugar reduction with case studies and speeches focusing on innovative solutions without loss of flavour or functionality.
Fi Europe & Ni organiser UBM has announced a record number of exhibitors for 2017, with 1,500 suppliers. More than 350 of them will present over 2,500 products in the colours or flavours categories. The exhibitor list ranges from flagships like GNT, SVZ, Naturex, Sensient and Symrise as well as innovative newcomers such as La Tourangelle, FoodSolutionsTeam and Aroma’s Lecocq.

GNT Group’s Guide to Global Consumer Demands attests importance of natural colours for future-proof products

Supermarkets today are full of products claiming to be natural: The food and beverage industry is responding to the massive global trend towards a healthier lifestyle. However, 45 percent of consumers are suspicious when they see claims of naturalness on product labels. To support manufacturers in understanding what consumers really want and perceive to be credibly natural, the GNT Group, leading global provider of Colouring Foods, and market research institute TNS surveyed some 5,000 people around the world. A comprehensive summary of the results, GNT’s Guide to Global Consumer Demands comprising 17 pages of findings, is now available as a free download.

“This guide provides food and beverage manufacturers with a unique manual to understand not only the naturalness trend but general eating and shopping habits, the evaluation of specific product characteristics, labels and ingredients,” says Paul Collins, Director of International Sales and Marketing at GNT Group. “Delivering insights on consumer needs, trends and innovation is an inherent part of our full service approach. Our customers are always the first to know about surveys, market analyses and other research that ideally supplement their own studies.”

Natural food is free from additives

The results of the latest guide show that, in order to be deemed as natural, products have to be free from additives: more than three in four people worldwide are convinced that preservatives, artificial flavours and sweeteners have no place on their ingredient lists. The most important aspect when judging naturalness, however, is colour: 79 percent of consumers demand natural products to be made without artificial colourants. Factors like the use of pesticides, genetic modification and content of vitamins or minerals are of less importance. “It becomes clear that food manufacturers who want to turn consumers’ scepticism into trust need to replace artificial additives with natural and recognizable alternatives”, explains Paul Collins.

When it comes to colour, an ideal way to clean up ingredient lists are Colouring Foods. These are concentrates made exclusively from fruit, vegetables and edible plants which can be used in nearly every product category. On the label, they can simply be listed as “Colouring Food (concentrate of grape, elderberry)” or “concentrates (grape, elderberry)”, showing at one glance that they are natural and made from foods. Paul Collins adds, “With our stable and most verified EXBERRY® portfolio there is no more need to settle for additive colourants. Combining our expertise in natural food colouring with the insights from our consumer research, we can support manufacturers ideally in securing their future success.”

GNT’s Guide to Global Consumer’s Demands is available for download at