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Inulin gets the GRAS green light


News again today on inulin with Sensus America, a subsidiary of Dutch company Sensus, announcing that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given inulin Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) status.

At the same time, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) of the FDA gave the green light for inulin use as a water binder, emulsifier, stabiliser and texturiser - at a level between 2 - 5 per cent in non-standardised meat food products.

The news will provide the food ingredients company, and indeed others working with inulin, with a strong edge to tackle the competitive health-driven food marketplace. Applications of inulin as a health ingredient are related to its properties as a soluble, prebiotic fibre. In formulating low carbohydrate foods, improving calcium uptake in the body and in promoting a healthy micro-flora and immune function in the colon, adds Sensus America in a statement this week.

"We know that this is an important step in bringing Americans closer to the many physiological and functional benefits that inulin offers," said Bryan Tungland, vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs for Sensus.

Sensus America is working with several North American-based food manufacturers on similar applications of its Frutafit inulin and Frutalose fructooligosaccharide (FOS), partially hydrolysed inulins. "There are already many successful products in the market and we expect many more with the final FDA-approval for the Frutafit-inulin," commented Sally Brain, vice president of sales and marketing for North America.

Last month Sensus announced the first approval of a 'healthy colon' claim for its Frutafit inulin product by the Dutch Public Health Ministry. The approval was granted for Frutafit inulin's use in breads.

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