International Flavors & Fragrances says it has developed a new range of flavors that are said to capture the simple taste of chicken without anything added.
The company believes there is a demand for traditional basic flavors and it is offering its customers a tookit of key chicken profiles to build on, including boiled white meat, boiled dark meat, skin, roasted and grilled flavors.
Using real chicken for taste would require a high level in the end product, which raises problems such as cost and shelf life, according to Jos Muilwijk, IFF head of global savory category management.
But he told FoodNavigator-USA.com: “When we started to analyze the various markets, we were surprised by how little chicken flavor there was in chicken core products.”
Muilwijk claims they have now “raised the bar for natural chicken flavors in the industry”.
He said:“Our extensive consumer research conducted in major markets across the globe told us that chicken is a nearly universal comfort food and that consumers want authentic, familiar chicken tastes and aromas created by cooking techniques they know and love.
“Spices and herbs add interest and regional character, but the true 'essence' of chicken should shine through.”
The natural flavor range is available across the globe but IFF has said it has a strong position in the US market, where boiled white meat, roasted and grilled flavors are likely to be more popular, as well as Europe and Asia.
They can be combined and augmented to create custom applications for soups, sauces, bouillons, gravies, marinades, noodles, quick service foods, frozen foods, among others.
Muilwijk added:“These chicken profiles can be easily blended with ingredients specific to any locality or cuisine, enabling the creation of signature notes for specific product brands.”
IFF said it developed the flavors using its sensory and consumer research in key markets around the globe to provide insights into needs, preferences, cooking and consumption habits.
From there, certified master chef Florian Webhofer said: “We brought in a selection of the world's finest chickens, raised on different diets and in a variety of habitats, and cooked them open pan, slow cook, high pressure pan and more - using nothing but a pinch of salt as seasoning - and found the best target flavor profiles to guide the creative team in the design of this new range.”
Trained sensory panels evaluated these to find the superior profiles in each category and R&D and flavor creation professionals matched them exactly, “detecting many new proprietary substances in the process”.
IFF says that in all target markets it can claim that its chicken range is natural because it has adjusted the products to meet varying legislation requirements for natural ingredients in different countries.
A recent report from Business Insight said that the health and wellness trend is "a core focus for flavor companies". In particular, consumers are driving food manufacturers to turn to natural flavors that, in addition to offering an all-natural ingredient appeal, meet clean label needs.
In June Dutch flavor firm Exter Aroma rolled out a new range of natural savory flavors - meat, roasted beef, chicken, roasted chicken, and boiled chicken - that specifically targeted the growing demand for natural ingredients.