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IFFA 2016: The news about ingredients and additives in the manufacture of meat products

iffaHealthy eating, convenience, traditional products minus e-numbers

The IFFA is the No. 1 for the meat industry and has become the driver behind trends across the whole sector. This also applies to the product segment of spices, ingredients and casings for which the IFFA is a trend barometer and so is a must for major names involved in producing ingredients that provide taste and functionality and also casings. It takes place in Frankfurt am Main from 7 to 12 May 2016.

In their own eyes the companies from this sector of ingredients and additives are not just supplying products; they also provide information, integrated solutions and knowledge. This puts trends in food and the nutritional ‘zeitgeist’ in the spotlight.

Clean Label has been trending big-time in the meat sector for many years. It gives expression to the demands made by consumers and the retail sector to have products that are as far as possible additive-free. For food manufacturers it is not always easy to unite cost-effective processing with the desires and demands of the market. In response to this current clean-label trend industry suppliers have developed compounds that do not contain e-numbers and assist with declaration requirements. These systems are stabilised using functional ingredients which do not need to be declared as additives. Clean labelling is also a current topic not just for traditional products, but also in the case of spices for grilling and for sauces. Monosodium glutamate has been all but eliminated in such recipes, in particular in the case of products manufactured on an industrial scale. Today careful eaters tend to define themselves more by what they will not eat. These consumers have given rise to a market of ‘free-from’ products, such as lactose-free or gluten-free foods.

Meat substitute products
These days meat consumption is a subject of discussion across a wide field of interests. While most consumers still believe in the saying that ‘meat is a slice of vitality’, it cannot be denied that vegetarian or vegan options have now assumed a position at the heart of society. Meat substitute products have come all the way from the niche market of organic products and health food shops to the shelves of food retailers and discount supermarkets.

With its product expertise in the manufacture and processing of meat and convenience products, the supplier industry has extended its range to include vegetarian product lines. On offer are high-value convenience solutions for vegetarian chili and bolognaise in addition to functional and taste-enhancing solutions for the manufacture of products similar to boiled sausage. In addition to existing hen-egg based products, other options are being trialled. Other possible options for the production of meat free products include seitan, high protein wheat fractions, soya proteins, other vegetable proteins and also tofu. At present these products do not meet the clean-label requirement. Mixtures of proteins of animal and vegetable origin are also proposed for the manufacture of vegetarian cold cuts. Ingredients that provide texture and structure are important for sliced foods. In addition their water binding properties should be as high as possible. Vegan products have been produced on the basis of pea protein.

Premium products
Over the last few years a market for premium and gourmet products has arisen. Consumers are no longer just interested in the lowest price. So, the ‘saving is sexy’ mentality is on the wane and low-price stores have seen a corresponding decline in customer numbers. This has been accompanied by a battle for consumers with ever more discerning palates. It opens up markets for premium seasonings. The snack market is also divided into premium and discount products, with new and clever snack ideas being worthy of note. One idea is to offer complete recipes together with the appropriate seasoning, including sauces, functional additives and sprays. Contemporary snacks for ‘out-of-home’ consumption or for take-away products are the result.

Salt reduction
The use of salt in cooking is one of those topics, alongside calories, fat and sugar, that has been subject of public debate over many years. The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends a maximum of five grams, while the German Nutrition Society (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ernährung – DGE) sets the limit at six grams. In Germany men consume around 10 grams of salt per day and women 8.4 grams, while 20 – 30 percent of Germans are said to be ‘salt-sensitive’. The supplier industry has been grappling with the issue of salt reduction and salt substitution over a number of years. This year’s IFFA will present ideas to significantly reduce the salt content of boiled sausage and cooked ham without compromising on taste. Furthermore, salt substitutes are not only used in the field of traditional meat products, but also in convenience food specialities such as in the production of soups and sauces.

The IFFA takes place in Frankfurt am Main from 7 to 12 May 2016 with halls 4.0 and 4.1 featuring the top names from home and abroad involved in all aspects of the product segment: ingredients, spices, additives and casings. They will include amongst others: Wiberg, Frutarom, Van Hees, Lay, Moguntia Gewürzwerke/Indasia, AVO-Werke, Raps, Almi, Pacovia, Hagesüd and Fuchs.

The signs are good for a successful IFFA 2016. Messe Frankfurt is anticipating around 960 exhibitors from 47 countries. Over 110,000 square metres of exhibition space, manufacturers will present innovative technologies, trends and future-oriented solutions for all stages in the meat processing chain: from slaughter and dismembering to processing, packaging and sales. Trade visitors are expected to number around 60,000 from 140 countries.

Full information is available at: www.iffa.com