FDA’s mandate on the removal of artificial trans-fats of partially hydrogenated (PHO) products as emulsifiers in the food industry has bemused food manufacturers. Non-PHO emulsifiers are designed to make this transition from PHO ingredients to alternatives such as non-PHO emulsifiers easy for manufacturers. Complete transition is expected to be cost intensive as PHO ingredients provided the most economical and highly functional alternatives in the food supply. Identifying these challenges, manufactures in the non-PHO emulsifier market are actively engaged in introducing non-PHO emulsifiers at competitive pricing without compromising quality and shelf stability.
Corbion, a chemicals company started the non-PHO emulsifier production even before FDA regulations were mandated. The company launched its Ensemble emulsifier line of non-PHO emulsifier fats and oils with similar functionality as PHOs. Kerry Ingredients has also launched non-PHO emulsifiers with oxidative stability similar to PHO oils. Cargill, another food giant has also introduced soy lecithins as non-PHO emulsifiers and an alternative to PHO-based monoglycerides and DATEM. As discriminating consumers demand transparency in their food product purchase, non-PHO emulsifier are set to gain momentum during the forecast period. As the F&B sector continues to witness a rapidly transforming labelling claims, the non-PHO emulsifier market is likely to grow at a steady pace in the future.
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While the global specialty food market grows at a CAGR of around 8%, demand for specialty food ingredients is likely to surge rapidly in the upcoming years. Emulsifiers play an important role in stabilizing processed foods, and the rapidly growing specialty food market in complementing the growth of the global emulsifiers market. Nevertheless, high stringency of food safety rules and regulations has a huge impact on the development of the food emulsifiers market.
A Federal Ban on Partially Hydrogenated Oils in North America to Lubricate the Market Growth
Partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) are one of the primary sources of Trans Fatty Acids (TFAs), consuming which can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) as well as coronary heart diseases (CHD). As stated by the World Health Organization, CVDs were the main reason for over 45% deaths caused due to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), in 2016. Removing PHOs from human food products can bring down the number of heart attacks and deaths each year, demand for non-PHO emulsifiers in likely to swell in the food industry. In Denmark, banning the sales of food products containing PHOs or TFAs reduced the number of deaths caused due to CHDs by around 50% in past 20 years. This is primarily boosting the growth of the global non-PHO emulsifiers market.
Considering the alarming number of deaths caused due to CHDs, the U.S. Food and Drug Association imposed a ban on the use of PHOs in processed food products. FDA stated that PHOs are no longer ‘Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS)’ to be used in human foods, and the ban will be implemented from June 2018. In addition, ‘Health Canada’ – the public health department of the government of Canada – prohibited the use of PHOs in human foods by releasing a “Notice of proposal” that mirrors the decision of FDA. As PHOs are banned in both Canada and the U.S., the non-PHO emulsifiers market in North America is expected to grow rapidly in the near future.
Apart from North America, many European countries such as Denmark, Austria, Norway, Iceland, and Switzerland have curbed the amount of TFAs in food products up to the maximum limit of 2g per 100g of total fats. Various guidelines, dietary recommendations, and voluntary measures are being taken in the European food industry to reduce the use of PHOs in manufacturing process food products. This is likely to drive the growth of the global non-PHO emulsifiers market in the upcoming years.
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Non-PHO Emulsifier Manufacturers to Bank on an Increasing Number of Label-conscious Consumers
While consumers are becoming more health-conscious, they are relating their food choices to health. Rising awareness about the health hazards of consuming specific food ingredients such as PHOs is triggering the use of non-PHO emulsifiers while manufacturing processed food products. Food manufacturing companies, especially bakery manufacturers, are viewing clean label as about improving the nutritious value of food products. As consumers critically check food labels and nutritional information, which mainly affects their purchasing decisions, food manufacturers are using high-quality food ingredients and maintaining the integrity of their products.
In order to fulfill the demands of label-conscious consumers, bakery manufacturers are making use of non-PHO emulsifiers to produce PHO-free and healthier baked foods. Corbion N.V. – a Dutch food company – conducted its own proprietary research, which focused on the consumer behavior while purchasing bakery products such as bread, as well as processed meat. Corbion came to a conclusion that consumers checked food labels and ranked bread with no artificial preservatives and no PHO the highest. Based on results of the research, the company introduced enhanced baking ingredients such as cake mixes, icing stabilizers, and non-PHO emulsifiers to improve their clean-label product portfolio.
Market Players to Boost Investments in R&D to Find Ideal PHO Alternatives
As the 2018 deadline to comply with FDA’s ban on PHOs nears, food manufacturers, especially bakers, are intensifying their efforts to find PHO alternatives. Leading manufacturers in the global non-PHO emulsifiers market are focusing on R&D activities to find the most appropriate replacement for PHOs in emulsifiers. The National Sunflower Association stated that the sales of sunflower oil in the U.S. increased from 433 million pounds to more than 510 million pounds in a year by the end of 2017. Based on these statistics, the National Sunflower Association proposed that sunflower oil is the most appropriate replacer for PHOs in emulsifiers.
Apart from sunflower oil, many market players are making use of other innovative ingredients such as palm oil, canola, and soy to produce non-PHO emulsifiers. For an instance, Palsgaard – a leading manufacturing company in the global non-PHO emulsifiers market – recently introduced vegetable-based, non-PHO emulsifiers that are gluten-free and suitable for vegans. It produced non-PHO emulsifiers in the powdered format, which can provide better stability, enhanced texture, and shelf life of food products, while reducing the overall cooking cost.
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