Jul 16, 2020
Enzymes, as clean-label formulating tools, act to:
- Keep labels simple
- Remove ingredients that consumers dislike
- Reduce costs
Over the years, bakers have employed a variety of chemical additives to adjust baking performance and shelf life. Although determined by food regulators to be safe to use, such materials often come with long and hard to pronounce “chemical sounding” names. Consumers continue to ask for and choose products that they believe, or perceive, to be better for them. And that means selecting goods with few, if any, chemical additives.
Simply put, clean label means replacing those ingredients consumers find unacceptable such as DATEM, mono- and diglycerides, ADA and other emulsifiers and chemical oxidation/reduction ingredients. These compounds are not acceptable any more to many consumers. Generally, consumer view enzymes as more favorable when named among a food’s ingredients.
When developing a new product, one with a clean or cleaner label may open a baker to more distribution outlets or shelf space with retail customers. The shelf life expected of most baked goods today requires the use of enzymes to achieve what the retailer and consumers demand. The finished product must not only taste good and look good but also deliver on the consumers’ expectations of freshness.
Changes in dough pH and temperature will break up (another term is “denature”) enzymes into their component amino acids. They are no longer identifiable against the background of other proteins in the finished product. Thus, enzymes enjoy favored treatment when it comes to labelling.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration deems enzymes to be incidental additives as processing aids (21 CFR 101.100). This status exempts enzymes from inclusion in the ingredient legends on food packaging. The E.U. also does not require enzymes to be declared by ingredient lists on consumer products (EU 1169/2011 Article 20). Regulations differ in Canada and Mexico. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency considers enzymes to be food additives that must be listed by common name (CFIA Section B.016, Table V). Mexico also views enzymes as food additives and allows them to be listed by the generic name “enzyme” (NOM-051 SCFI/SSA1-2010).
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