Shortlisted companies for FiE Innovation Awards revealed

One of the highlights at this year’s Fi Europe & Ni (28-30 November, Frankfurt, Germany) will be the announcement of the winners of the Innovation Awards. Preceding this, the ten-member jury, chaired by Peter Wennström of The Healthy Marketing Team, has presented a shortlist of 17 nominated companies.

In the running for the Future of Nutrition Award, which is the only category that targets also non-exhibitors, is Monteloeder, a biotech company presenting a digital solution that allows customers to exchange experiences about healthcare products. With the Automated Alberts Smoothie Machine, Alberts is also a candidate for this award.

A nominee for the Sustainability Champion Award is the oil producer IOI Loders Croklaan for its strategy for a sustainable and transparent supply chain for palm oil. The jury also selected the Food Solutions Team, which uses KaroPRO to produce high-quality fibre from vegetable marc.

Candidates for the Organic Champion Award include Best Cooking Pulses Inc. with a sustainable and organic fibre produced from the skin and seed pods of peas, and herba ingredients, who produce organic rice flour for baby food that is traceable from cultivation to the final ingredient.

The shortlisters for the Clean Label & Natural Innovation Awards are Corbion and Ingredion. Corbion offers clean label ingredients that are said to improve the colour stability, cooking results and consistency of meat and poultry products. Ingredion was able to convince the jury with its clean label-compatible functional rice flour for use in soups, sauces and ready meals.

Nominated for the Life Stages Innovation Award is Arla Food Ingredients with its taste-neutral ingredient made from whey protein that keeps both water and fat and sugar-free sports drinks crystal clear. In addition, the experts consider Novozymes’ milk proteins for infant formulas to be a promising ingredient to reduce the risk of allergic reactions.

The Performance Nutrition Innovation Award candidate is ABM for its organic clean label vegetable protein, which is said to be rich in nutrients and antioxidants and ideal for boosting protein levels in bars, vegetarian meat alternatives, cereals or snacks.

Listed for the Growth Categories Innovation Award, which targets dairy, bakery and beverages, is the company ERIE for its low-fat milk protein crisps — containing 90% protein  — that can be consumed directly or used as an ingredient in bars or breakfast cereals. Another candidate is Partner-M. This company’s starch flour, Amilon, is based on Russian wheat, serves as a substitute for conventional starch in bakery and confectionery applications and improves baking properties and texture. Also nominated is Parabel for its duckweed plant protein. With an amino acid score of more than 1.0, it is — according to WHO — a full protein and suitable for use in drinks, snacks and bars.

IOI Loders Croklaan is also nominated for the Reduction & Reformulation Innovation Award. The company’s ingredient for puff pastry, based on shea instead of palm fat, has a comparatively low proportion of hydrogenated fatty acids and reduces the total fat content by 20%. DSM has also been listed for an innovative cheese culture, which makes it possible to reduce the fat content of cheese by up to 30% and still maintain the texture and mouthfeel of full fat cheese. Also in the running is the METAROM Group with its natural solution to reduce the sugar content in beverages and dairy products by up to 30% and, at the same time, compensate for any taste effects. Novozymes scored with an innovative lactase ingredient that enables the production of dairy products with less sugar and lactose and a great taste.

Nominated for the Expo FoodTec Innovation Award is the company Handary, with a biodegradable and antimycotic protective film that prevents mold growth in solid, packaged food.

Peter Wennström, jury chairman, says, “We were really impressed by the diversity with which companies are mastering the industry’s challenges. The selection process has been very difficult.

“The big topic this year is delivering innovative solutions for protein enrichment — to easily improve an individual’s vitality with protein-rich products is important for almost every consumer.”

The jury will announce the winners at a festive award ceremony on Tuesday 28 November. Trade show visitors can get an overview of the 17 shortlisted companies and their products in advance in hall 9 at Stand F5; the nominees will present their submissions along with the Start-up Innovation Challenge candidates.

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