Givaudan unveils masking toolkit for alternative proteins

Givaudan has unveiled a selection of masking solutions in combination with a new smart masking tool, offering flavourists fast access to high-performance solutions to combat off-notes across plant-based proteins. This effort has resulted in the largest, most comprehensive collection of data related to plant proteins and taste ingredients in the industry.

Givaudan’s data and knowledge allows for holistic solutions to counter off-notes across six plant-based proteins: soy; pea; faba (from broad beans); rice; oats; algae, and whey. The smart masking tool, an expansion of Givaudan’s extensive, ongoing SmartTools programme, was created by conducting over 2,000 evaluations, tried and tested by Givaudan’s expert panel over the past year-and-a-half. New maskers were then developed as a result of the extensive knowledge gained.

Masking off-notes in protein is a time-intensive and often complicated process, as one ingredient may counteract a particular off-note but exacerbate another. And while each additional ingredient adds complexity it may also increase overall cost.

“Striking the balance between functionality, texture, taste, nutrition and cost when working with alternative proteins is difficult to achieve without fully understanding the interactions of all the ingredients in the food or beverage product” said Dr. Flavio Garofalo, global category director savoury flavours and natural ingredients at Givaudan.

“Givaudan’s smart masking tool offers an innovative way of working with these proteins, providing flavourists with the ability to safeguard the taste and textural integrity of the products, regardless of the protein supplier and the techniques they use to isolate the protein. This approach also ensures that every ingredient in a product has a function and avoids the cycle of using one ingredient to mask another and then another”.

Conducting research in order to understand all aspects related to off-notes generated by proteins means that Givaudan will be equipped to create additional taste ingredients going forward. While the smart masking tool and subsequent maskers have been developed for nutritional beverages, their benefits are already proving useful in other applications; notably, work has begun on applying this knowledge to solutions for meat alternatives.

These recent developments demonstrate significant progress in addressing the taste challenges associated with plant-based protein in nutritional beverages, as well as shining a light on further product development opportunities with lesser known proteins.

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