CP Kelco and Chr. Hansen join forces to develop breakthrough “vegurts”

A CP Kelco and Chr. Hansen collaboration will showcase industrially validated prototypes of drinkable and spoonable vegurts with either oat, soy, pea, coconut or almond bases at this year’s Food Ingredients Europe.

Describing the plant-based yogurt alternatives (“vegurts”) as “next level”, the two powerhouses are responding to consumer demand for healthy and more sustainable food choices driving an “explosion in launches of plant-based alternatives” to traditional dairy products.

Within these categories, manufacturers and retailers have recognised the advantages of shelf-stable products which can reduce food waste and increase geographical reach. For consumers, ambient-stable products offer convenience.

CP Kelco and Chr. Hansen have closely collaborated to demonstrate that production of nutritious and great-tasting, ambient, plant-based yogurt alternatives are possible for a variety of different plant bases.

“The technological challenge to produce both spoonable and drinkable ambient vegurts with great nutrition, taste and texture is significant,” said Christian Gilleladen, principal application scientist at Chr. Hansen. “Selecting the right culture to provide fermentation performance, texture and flavour for each recipe, and having these complement the stabilisation and flavour systems is critical to making great products.”

Gilleladen continued: “By working together, we have been able to unlock the synergies between ingredients and process to produce a variety of desired thicknesses and mouthfeel.”

“This collaboration represents a new way of helping our respective customers accelerate their product development and access technical application support globally,” said Anne Sinha, marketing director at CP Kelco, on behalf of the two companies. “With access to teams who know each other and work together well, and who are closely connected to other global ingredient producers, customers can benefit from an integrated team of world-leading experts with insights across their entire development chain.”

To date, a range of vegurt prototypes are available to food producers for tasting, and they have received positive feedback from select customers. The prototype recipes can be tweaked to meet specific requirements for sugar, protein, fat, texture and flavour, thanks to both company’s expertise in fermentation, stabilisation, flavour, processing and packaging offered by the collaboration.

“Formulating plant-based vegurts is not straight forward, and we want to help our customers to be best in class by offering our joint technical expertise,” said Tora Jorn, sales technical service manager at CP Kelco. “Together, we look forward to this opportunity of sharing our support and helping with the development of the flavours, textures and nutritional profiles our customers are targeting when they embark on the plant-based, shelf-stable vegurts journey.”

The vegurts will be available for tasting at the CP Kelco stand 4.C180 at Food Ingredients Europe (FIE) in Paris, December 6-8.

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