Solve your food product problems
By Sarab Sahi - 28 June 2018
Food is becoming more complex with a growing number of innovative ingredients and processes used to make products tastier, healthier and cheaper. But complexity can increase the risk that things can go wrong with a product.
We are often approached by clients with questions related to the appearance, texture and rheology of their products, such as "Why is my product going soggy?" "Why are my biscuits cracking?" "Why is my mayonnaise thinning?" or "Why is my mousse sinking?" All these questions can be traced to problems with the physical properties of food.
BRC Global Standard for Food Safety Issue 8: a guide to key changes
By Richard Leathers - 20 June 2018
What is Issue 8 of the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety and when will it be released?
The BRC Global Standard for Food Safety is the most widely used of the commercial standards for assuring production of safe food, with over 19,000 food certificates issued annually by 1,500 auditors working for 64 certification bodies. The eagerly anticipated ‘Issue 8’ is the new update, which will be released in August 2018. First audits will be conducted against this from 01 February 2019.
Surprising benefits of tailored training
By Andrew Hughes - 17 May 2018
By 2025, it is predicted that the UK food and drink industry will need 130,000 new skilled workers to meet demand and replace retiring workers. The baking sector is a vitally important part of the food manufacturing industry and in the UK is a £3 billion industry and employs over 20,000 people. With potentially so many vacancies, it’s essential that bakery industry acts to tackle the issue of skills and training.
Hepatitis E - your common questions answered
By Martin D'Agostino - 04 May 2018
What is hepatitis E?
Hepatitis E produces inflammation of the liver, which is caused by infection with the Hepatitis E Virus (HEV). Hepatitis E can cause an acute and self-limiting infection and occasionally develops into acute, severe liver disease, which is fatal in about 2% of cases. HEV is widespread in Southeast Asia, Northern and Central Africa, India and Central America. The incubation period of HEV following exposure is approximately 3-8 weeks.
Save money without compromising your product
By Martin Whitworth - 30 April 2018
Increasing competition, rising ingredient prices and value-conscious shoppers are squeezing profits in food manufacturing. But it can be challenging to cut costs while maintaining quality and ensuring the texture, flavor and appearance of your product remain the same.
Manufacturers need to find innovative ways to reduce costs and find savings in their supply chain. Ingredients and processing are two areas where manufacturers can do this.
Five things to get right when making a sensory claim
By Sarah Thomas - 15 February 2018
"Packaging has become a marketing tool in its own right which can be utilised to 'break through' the 'competitive clutter' when being viewed in a supermarket setting, with the intention to engage and connect with the consumer"1. It is becoming increasingly important for producers to differentiate their products in a way that will provide a competitive advantage and entice consumers to purchase their product. One such way is to substantiate a sensory claim in relation to a product attribute such as "crunchy", or through superiority claims in relation to a competitor such as "brand Y is liked better than brand X".
Changes in approval of novel foods
By Alison Sharper - 12 February 2018
The new Novel Foods Regulation (2015/2283) applies from 1 January 2018 and revoked the previous legislation that had been in force for 20 years. So what changes does this bring to the definition of novel food and its authorisation process?
Maximise your chances of a successful product launch
By Charlotte Holmes - 06 December 2017
The trade press and market research reports are filled with sobering statistics about new food and drink products failure rates, but this doesn’t tell the whole story. Many new products don’t even make it to launch - they fail quietly in companies’ NPD kitchens or during factory trials, causing significant losses in time and money. So why does this happen?
Nutritional labelling of alcoholic drinks
Labelling of ingredients and nutrition information on most alcoholic drinks has long been voluntary in the United Kingdom, European Union and most world markets. However, many trade associations have introduced voluntary schemes to provide this information.
Regulatory considerations for sports foods
By Alison Sharper - 23 October 2017
Recent changes to the regulatory landscape
The majority of 'sports' products including protein powders and drinks are now regulated as ‘normal’ foods. Until recently, sports foods were classified as ‘foods intended for particular nutritional uses’ if they complied with the provisions of the Foods for Particular Nutritional Uses legislation (Directive 2009/39/EC). Regulation (EU) No. 609/2013 on foods for specific groups came into force on 20 July 2016: it abolishes the concept of food intended for particular uses and repealed Directive 2009/39/EC.
Five pet food innovation trends to watch in 2018
By Laura Elam - 10 October 2017
Pets are big business: in the UK alone there are some 58 million, with an estimated 46% of households owning a pet. The pet food industry in the UK is worth close to £3 billion and the biggest value areas are cats and dogs. So, what are the next big trends in pet food?
The USA is a world leader in the pet food industry and influences many of the trends in the UK. Most trends in pet food follow trends in human foods because pet food has to appeal to the person who buys it – not just the pet that eats it.
How can enzymes make baked goods healthier?
The baking industry faces many challenges in providing products that meet the needs of modern consumers, especially since baked goods are often seen as indulgent, with high levels of fat and sugar. Government targets have led to a reduction in the amount of fat, sugar and additives used in manufacturing, but consumer demand has also created a desire for more clean-label products.
Upskilling the baking industry to help meet the sugar reduction targets
By Katie-Joy Woods - 19 September 2017
By 2025, it is predicted that the UK food and drink industry will need 130,000 new skilled workers to meet demand and replace retiring workers. The baking sector is a vitally important part of the food manufacturing industry and in the UK is a £3 billion industry and employs over 20,000 people. With potentially so many vacancies, it’s essential that bakery industry takes action to tackle the issue of skills and training.
Things you need to consider when setting a shelf life
By Linda Everis - 25 July 2017
The shelf-life of a product is the time that it remains acceptable to eat. Within the shelf life the product will remain safe and retain the desired sensory, chemical, physical and microbiological characteristics.
Understanding shelf life is essential in assuring the safety and quality of the product. It’s important to re-evaluate shelf life when products are reformulated because changing or reducing levels of salt, sugar or preservatives can all impact on shelf life.
Good hygiene starts with kitchen design
By Emma De-Alwis - 18 July 2017
Hygienic design is essential to ensure that the cleanliness of a kitchen is easy to maintain. The suitability of the design and ease of cleanliness can lead to the reduction of food contamination and food poisoning incidents. When planning and designing a commercial kitchen, hygienic design is often forgotten at the expense of efficiency, functionality and practicality. For example, when designing a kitchen the significance of gaps and sealants can be overlooked. Gaps between the counter and wall are hard to effectively clean and can encourage pests such as insects and rodents. They can also encourage food debris build up and microbial growth. These areas should be sufficiently sealed and the efficacy of these seals reassessed regularly.
Process development of retorted foods – your top three most frequently asked questions
By Sarah McFarland - 30 June 2017
Thousands of new food and drink products are launched in the UK each year. Many of those products will require a company to purchase a retort/autoclave cooker. I have seen many companies – even experienced manufacturers – invest in a retort only to be left feeling in the dark because it’s a completely new area for them.
Arsenic – complying with new limits in food
By David Bellis - 15 May 2017
Arsenic is known to be harmful to health, but not all forms of arsenic are equally toxic – the inorganic form is far more harmful than 'organic arsenic' (arsenic bound in organic molecules). Inorganic arsenic can cause long term health effects. The regulatory limits for arsenic in food therefore focus on inorganic arsenic, and it is important that methods of arsenic analysis distinguish these types if the results are to be meaningful. We have developed a method that does just this.
The top 5 HACCP food audit non-conformances and how to avoid them
By Clare Sant - 2 May 2017
Your HACCP plan is there for a reason. Not complying with it is considered a non-conformance. Even though HACCP plans have been a requirement of the Food Safety Legislation since 2006, over the 30 years I have been auditing I see the same non-conformances cropping up time and time again.
Food colour – it's more important than you think
By Martin Whitworth - 24 April 2017
Colour is one of the most important sensory aspects of food and drink. As well as indicating its likely freshness and flavour, it can also influence consumer choice and enjoyment of a product.
Since the 1980s, there has been a reduction in the use of artificial colours and a move towards clean label ingredients. With an explosion in the number and variety of products on the market and greater consumer demand for clean label ingredients, it has never been more important for formulators to perfect their product’s colour. This is particularly important for products sold in transparent packaging.
Pulsed electric field - the potential in food processing
By Danny Bayliss - 19 April 2017
Pulsed electric field processing is a well known non-thermal food preservation technique, but did you know it can also be used to improve product quality and food production processes?
During PEF processing, short high voltage pulses are applied which induce pores in cell membranes. At low field strengths (<10 kV/cm) pores can be formed in the cells of both liquid and bulk food products.
Developing food for the ageing consumer - six things to consider
By Sarah Chapman - 21 March 2017
It's no secret that the average age of the European population is increasing - the over 60s now account for nearly a quarter of the total population. As we age, our bodies and our nutritional needs change. As a market, ageing consumers remain largely ignored by the food industry, but they offer significant opportunities - they often have a higher disposable income and more time to browse new products while shopping. Companies that understand the opportunities and challenges can ensure that their new and mainstream products remain accessible and relevant to the needs of older consumers.
Protein profiling - how can it improve food safety and traceability?
By Reka Haraszi - 6 March 2017
We've recently started a new three year member-funded project looking at the use of protein profiling for assessing food safety and traceability. The aim is to explore, develop and apply mass spectrometry-based methods for a range of proteins (including allergens) found in complex matrices. We’re now looking for Campden BRI members to highlight their areas of interest.
Fast track food innovation
By Emma Hanby - 28 February 2017
'Food development', 'new product development', 'product innovation' – whatever you call it, developing new successful products is essential for food and drink companies to grow and thrive. In many companies more than half of revenue comes from products that were not in the product line five years earlier, so it’s important that ‘NPD’ is done right.
Fibre - an innovative approach to healthier baked goods
By Nicole Maher - 1 February 2017
There is considerable evidence linking poor dietary choices to higher risks of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Foods high in fat or sugar have been targeted by health campaigners as playing a key role in the global obesity and diabetes crisis. As a result, calls have been made by government officials to reduce levels of fat and sugar in popular food products such as baked goods.