An Israeli food business has launched a real-fruit-based ingredient it says can replace refined sugars in ready to eat (RTE) cereals.
The Fruitlift formulation from Gat Foods is composed of 90% fruit components in a liquid base that can be injected into any flour mixture in the extrusion line or applied via the coating drum in the production of cereals.
Recently RTE cereal has come under fire as a commodity that is perceived as overly high in sugar, artificial stabilizers, and other less-desired ingredients, and is increasingly being rebuffed by health-concerned consumers.
Food companies are aware that they can no longer “sugar coat” the fact that many cereals are heavily laden with refined sugars. This is especially pronounced regarding children — the key target market for this sector.
While the industry is harnessing efforts to bridge the “sugar gap” and make cereals more nutritive, simple sugar reduction is a tall order that incurs costs and carries technological challenges.
“The cereals market has been stagnant for some time,” says Michal Katzir Emek, International Marketing Director for Gat Foods. “Refined sugars can make up anywhere from 15% to a whopping 40% of a typical box of cereals.
“We decided to face the challenge head-on and give manufacturers the option of offering consumers the next generation of cereals — cereals that are more nutritious, with cleaner labels, and infused with more natural ingredients, yet without sacrificing the organoleptic qualities. And, most importantly, attaining a delicate sweetness with zero refined sugar.”
“Consumers reluctant to give up the convenience of RTE breakfast cereals are voicing a desire to see more healthful attributes attached to these products to fit their busy lifestyles,” says Hila Bentman, International Brand Manager for Gat Foods.
“There are numerous cereals on the market with a fruit coating, however they still contain relatively high amounts of refined sugar. Our fruit base is designed to permeate the entire expanded cereal as a complete substitute for the refined sugars that have historically been an inseparable part of RTE cereals.”