Clean and clear with kitchen technology

Consumers increasingly wish for transparency in nutrition. A clean and clear food label with understandable ingredients is therefore a must. How can we respond to these wishes? Exter responds to these wishes of the consumers and the demand of the producers, says Iwona Brederveld, Global Product Manager at Exter B.V.

Iwona Brederveld, Global Product Manager at Exter B.V

Consumers want more than just good taste. They want to know what they are eating, how and where it is made and what is inside their food. Technical names and E-numbers on food labels are not understood. Therefore, the food industry has been working towards ‘cleaner and clear’ food labelling for a long time. It is a challenge to create and keep delicious taste and appearance of foods without using additives. At Exter, we went a step further than clean label. We developed a new product range of clear label: Culinairex, purely made with ingredients you cook yourself, at home. For instance, an onion sautéed in the oven, or a roasted chicken. 100% taste and 100% recognizable kitchen ingredients. Easy to use and store for the industry, delicious to eat and understandable for consumers. Our oven technology is what allows this, and it is within grasp of the consumer’s understanding.

Authentic yet reproducible

Exter is a savoury taste producer. We have been making savoury taste ingredients since 1928 based on side streams of amongst others the plant-based oil industry. We use the proteins of these side streams as a raw material. This way, they do not get lost for human nutrition. To create our taste, we use authentic kitchen technologies; we cook, bake and roast in our special ovens. A beautiful technique, which is traditional and thus demands a high level of knowledge and expertise. For example; when you bake a cake at home, how often is the result the same?
We succeed in giving a consistent outcome.

Meat taste as a challenge

A very important trend in savoury foods right now is plant-based, or vegan. The clean and clear movement is very visible in these plant-based foods. The challenge lies in reproducing the natural taste of meat, in replicating the taste of for example chicken without using a chicken or an egg? Meat is, by nature, rich in taste; it is juicy, and the taste stays for a long time. Plant-based products, by nature, do not possess these appetizing qualities. This is why you need many different ingredients to copy the taste and texture of meat. We are specialized in the meat-tasting ingredients. I always explain this by using an example. A chicken eats corn. Corn contains proteins with specific amino acids. The chicken is purely a carrier of these amino acids. It’s the plants that produce the amino acids. With our oven technology, a reaction takes place which is responsible for the taste of oven baked chicken like at home. In other words: at Exter we don’t always need meat!

Exter is a member of IFFI, a business network in the food ingredients industry. The organisation signals trends, like clean and clear and plant-based nutrition, which this column is about. Together with members IFFI looks at possibilities for business and creates value in the chain.

Iwona Bredeveld: “IFFI is an organization which brings together people working in the Dutch food industry. The organization is a beautiful initiative to observe current trends together and share knowledge with each other.”

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