IFT 2019 Innovation awards embrace ‘back to nature’
A flavour with natural antimicrobial properties, plant-based red colourings, and sweeteners made from upcycled food waste have won the top honours in the IFT19 Food Expo Innovation Awards competition.
The awards, presented on the first evening of the annual IFT Congress and Expo, currently running in New Orleans, were announced and presented respectively to Bavaria Corp, Chr Hansen, and Comet Bio.
Bavaria Corporation garnered the 2019 IFT Food Expo Innovation Award for its Bafos MP Natural Flavour, which contains natural preserving agents that have strong antimicrobial properties against yeast, mould, and gram-positive bacteria.
Derived from a food-grade aqueous extract of an edible fungus, the water-soluble ingredient offers an alternative to sorbate and benzoate and is well-suited for preserving low pH foods and beverages.
Chr Hansen was honoured for its Minimally Processed FruitMax Reds from its Hansen Sweet Potato (pictured above). The vibrant red colourings provide a plant-based alternative to carmine and synthetic reds.
Available as a water-soluble powder or liquid, the red colourings are heat and light stable with no off-tastes and are less pH sensitive than other fruit and vegetable concentrates. Applications include confectionery, fruit preparations, bakery, and fermented dairy products.
Comet Bio captured the 2019 IFT Food Expo Innovation Award for its Sweeterra Syrup Blends, which have up to 35% less calories, lower sugar, and higher dietary fibre content than traditional corn syrup.
Made from upcycled food and farm leftovers such as wheat straw and corn stalks, the sweetener blends are functionally equivalent to corn syrup and can be used in confectionery, gummies, fruit preparations, energy drinks, nutrition bars, and bakery products.
The 2019 IFT Food Expo Innovation Awards were presented to the three companies at the awards ceremony by IFT President-Elect Designate Noel Anderson.
“Now in its 13th year, the Food Expo Innovation Awards program is a showcase for amazing advancements in our profession,” said Anderson. “Exclusive to companies exhibiting at the IFT19 Food Expo here in New Orleans, these awards honour outstanding innovation in products, ingredients, technologies, instrumentation, equipment, and services that were commercially introduced since January 1st of 2018.”
A panel of 10 jurors from academia, government, and industry with broad expertise in research & product development, processing & packaging technology, and food safety selected the three companies and their innovations from 30 qualified entries.
Judging criteria included degree of innovation, technical advancement, benefits to food manufacturers and consumers, and scientific merit.