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Confectionery industry converting to colouring foodstuffs, says Chr. Hansen

By Jane Byrne , 09-Dec-2011

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Leading confectionery and ice-cream brand owners are switching to colouring foodstuffs over natural colours, as consumer demand for clean label products continues unabated, and retailers acknowledge the potential they hold in terms of brand value, claims Chr. Hansen.

FoodNavigator.com caught up with Rikke Sakstrup Frandsen, manager of the global expertise centre, confectioniony & ice-cream at that natural colours division of the Danish supplier to hear about the differences in terms of processing and extraction for natural colours and colouring foodstuffs.

Following on from regulation prompted by the so-called Southampton Study, confectionery producers, in the past few years, have been replacing the much-debated synthetic colors with natural colours.

However, both colours that are naturally sourced and synthetically manufactured are attributed an E-number which has to be used on product packaging in the EU. But, crucially, consumers may not be aware that not all E-numbers are artificial.

Sakstrup Frandsen said that confectioners are thus converting to colouring foodstuffs as a way to avoid having to use an E-number as these are ingredients that are used in their natural food form to lend their colour to the formulation, and do not go under any purification, unlike, natural colours which are generated through selective extraction.

And the Danish company, she added, has been working over the past few months at its confectionery expertise centre with some of the multinationals on addressing stability issues around the use of colouring foodstuffs in various sweet applications.

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