Arla Foods Ingredients has launched a new sports beverage comprising a whey protein hydrolysate solution developed for formulating sparkling protein drinks.
According to the company, Lacprodan HYDRO.Clear is fat and sugar-free and delivers optimised taste, a low bitterness profile and long shelf life. It is lactose-free, low in energy, very low in salt and easy to flavour.
Full-scale factory trials have shown that Lacprodan HYDRO.Clear can be used to produce sparkling water products with up to 6% protein. This makes it straightforward for sports drinks manufacturers to create crystal-clear, sparkling, high-protein RTD beverages with strong health credentials.
“With Lacprodan HYDRO.Clear it is possible to produce a great-tasting, high-protein sparkling water,” said Joe Katterfield, Health and Performance Nutrition Development Manager at Arla Foods Ingredients.
“This means that sports nutrition brands can launch, for example, a standard 330ml can containing 20g of whey protein per serving, making it perfect for sports nutrition users.
“The concept is also ideal for lifestyle and soft drink brands, as it allows them to offer a great source of protein in convenient and refreshing on-the-go format that will appeal to all ages.”
Sales of sports protein drinks increased by an average of 9.5% a year between 2013 and 2017 and are forecast to grow by 8.4% annually between 2018 and 2022 – highlighting consumers’ thirst for these products.
Sales of functional and fortified waters, meanwhile, rose by 4% a year from 2013-2017 and are forecast to grow by 6% a year from 2018-2022.
The carbonates segment is also robust, with a 22% a year increase in new launches globally between 2007 and 2017.
Katterfield added: “Market conditions are ideal for launching sparkling protein waters targeted at sports nutrition users, a group of consumers who are always on the look-out for products that deliver high levels of whey protein in a convenient format.
“However, for technical reasons – primarily related to issues around taste and bitterness – there are currently no sparkling protein waters on the market made exclusively with whey.
“In this respect, Lacprodan HYDRO.Clear is a game-changer, enabling manufacturers to incorporate 100% whey protein hydrolysate into crystal clear carbonated beverages.”