ISM/ProSweets Expo: The top innovations of 2023

Late April saw the snacking and sweets industries flocking to Cologne for the annual ISM/ProSweets expo, the leading global trade fair for these sectors. Here is news of the three top innovations from the show.

The winners were selected by an independent jury of experts from the industry, trade and food science. The award ceremony and the announcement of the winners took place during the exclusive ISM Dinner in Cologne on Sunday, 23 April 2023.

  • 1st place: tri d´Aix with Sweet Stories candy floss from Germany
  • 2nd place: CAL Marketing with “Brown Sugar Boba Milk Tea Mochi” from Australia 
  • 3rd place: WORLD´S COCONUT TRADING with “Purple Sweet Potato Chips BBQ” from Spain

Sweet Stories candy floss: Can candy floss, a product synonymous with sugar content, in fact be produced in no-added sugar format? And no flavour enhancers and still taste good?

Not until now was the unanimous decision of the jury. However, the innovative product that is made near Aachen was able to convince the experts of the contrary. “Just like at the fair,” concluded the jury.

Instead of sugar, Sweet Stories candy floss is sweetened using alternative sweeteners such as natural fruit extracts, stevia, erythritol, or other sugar substitutes. The manufacturing process is similar to that of traditional cotton candy.

The sweetener is dissolved in water and then heated. Once the mixture reaches a specific temperature, it is spun rapidly, causing it to solidify in thin strands. These strands are then collected onto a cone or packaged into containers, creating the familiar fluffy appearance of cotton candy.

The taste convinces – without additional colourings or gluten and above all with around 90 percent less sugar. The candy floss was voted the most innovative, new product at ISM 2023. 

Brown Sugar Boba Milk Tea Mochi primarily stood out because of its combination of being “soft” and “chewy”.

The product by CAL Marketing is a chilled taste experience of a special kind, the jury praised.

Japanese mochi, a traditional Japanese dessert made from glutinous rice flour, is developing into a global trend product. This particular variation combines the flavours of brown sugar, boba (also known as tapioca pearls), and milk tea.

The mochi itself is a soft, chewy, and slightly sticky rice cake. Inside the mochi, is a filling made with brown sugar that adds a rich and caramel-like sweetness. The filling contains boba, which are small, chewy tapioca pearls commonly used in bubble tea.T

The mochi exterior provides a soft and chewy bite, while the brown sugar filling adds a sweet and slightly gooey center. The boba pearls offer an additional layer of chewiness and a burst of flavour.

Purple Sweet Potato Chips BBQ from Spain, is a vegan product that stood out because of its smokey taste.

For the jury the colourful crisps of are an exotic head-turner that catch the eye among the usual conventional potato crisps and snack items.

Purple sweet potatoes, also known as purple yams or Stokes purple, have a naturally deep purple flesh that comes from their high content of anthocyanin, a type of antioxidant pigment.

These potatoes have a slightly sweeter flavour compared to regular potatoes, which adds a delightful twist to the chips.

Source: ISM

Conscious confectionery and better-for-you snacks take centre stage

ISM and ProSweets took place in Cologne, Germany, from April 23 to 25, covering the complete value chain for the global sweets and snacks market. The co-located trade show highlighted sustainable innovations from vegan confectionery and traceable ingredients to eco-friendly packaging. Healthier indulgent products were also showcased with lower sugar formulations and added-benefit offerings like high-fibre donuts, also presented on the show floor.

See a great pictorial review here of interesting products on show here... via