Chemical ingredients firm Renessenz has developed a cooling agent for chewing gum and candies that it claims outlasts all other menthol derivatives on the market.
Renessenz has commercialized artificial flavor Winsense WS-12, which it says boosts the authenticity of fruit flavors and out-cools other cooling agents six fold.
Steven Pringle, business director of flavor ingredients at Renessenz told ConfectioneryNews: “The product has been known as a molecule for some time but has been difficult to manufacture and synthesize before now.”
He added that consumer demand for a long-lasting coolness was non-existent until a few years ago, but has grown as consumers demand more extreme flavors.
Renessenz, which was the first company to commercialize another cooling agent, WS-3, used its proprietary synthetic method to develop a cheaper production process for WS-12 without negative taste effects.
Comparable cost in use
WS-3 and WS-23 are the most widely used coolants in the confectionery industry, but WS-12 lasts roughly six to eight times longer than both these ingredients.
“It’s more expensive to synthesize. However, the cost in use is comparable depending on the formulation,” said Pringle.
Renessenz envisages that WS-12 will not be used as a stand alone tool but in combination with other cooling agents such as WS-5.
Pringle said that WS-12 was odorless and tasteless and had no impact on the color of chewing gum.
Managing the cooling effect
The cooling agent is generally added at the end of the gum manufacturing process either in the coating or in the gum base.
“If you put it in the coating you get an initial impact. In the gum base, you get a steady release over a longer period of time. But if you want a dual effect, you put it in both,” said Pringle.
Renessenz said that the cooling agent worked well when blended with typical mint flavors such as mentol, l-carvone, spearmint and peppermint oil.
WS-12 is added at 100-500 ppm (parts per million) in chewing gum and 50-150 ppm in hard candies.
Authentic fruit flavors
Another function of WS-12 is to add freshness to fruit flavors in hard candies and jellies.
“You get a fresher strawberry flavor that comes through instantly,” said Pringle. “We think by adding a cooling material to the fruit flavor you boost the authenticity of the flavor.”
Isabella Campbell, commercial development manager at Renessenz added that a WS-12 and fruit flavor combo could work well for seasonal periods such as Halloween when consumers demand more extreme flavors.
WS-12 is approved for use in Europe and the US. However, the ingredient cannot be used in Japan, which prohibits amides as food ingredients. In Europe the cooling agent must be labelled “artificial flavor”.