A new orange flavor claims to allow beverage makers to bring the taste of freshly squeezed orange juice to their products, a flavor that has remained elusive in the past, says manufacturer International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF).
The new ingredient, part of the firm's popular Generessence line of flavors, is made exclusively from components found in the fruit itself.
It is particularly suitable for use in beverages such as water, seltzer and tea, where manufacturers want to mimic the 'fresh squeezed' flavor without the heaviness brought about by the texture of fresh juice.
According to senior flavorist at IFF Marie Wright, Generessence Orange is a breakthrough in orange flavors, involving around five years of exploration and development from flavorists around the world.
The new flavor was created using a two-fold process. Firstly, an analytical group worked on identifying every component present in orange juice - a complex process in itself as orange flavor can have around 300 different components.
A creative flavorist group then used these materials - many of them new - to mimic the flavor they came from.
"The Generessence range involves a more symbiotic approach to creating a flavor. We're really pushing and identifying components to new levels, which means we have new material to work with," Wright told FoodNavigator-USA.com.
"We take the analytical knowledge and then we go into creative mode, where we have to be able to imagine how a complex mixture of materials is going to smell."
Because the flavor is made from components found only in the orange fruit itself, the firm says it is more 'natural tasting' than other products on the market.
A water soluble ingredient made with a base of natural sugars, Generessence Orange also claims to overcome other obstacles that tend to occur in the making of orange beverages - such as thin or bitter aftertastes or off-note detection.
The new flavor is made by combining a minimum amount of orange oil with other components found in the fruit.
According to IFF, because the flavor is less dependent on citrus oils, which are subject to supply fluctuations, the product's quality and pricing is more stable than that of certain competing ingredients.
In terms of price, the firm said the new ingredient is "very reasonable" to use in beverage applications. With cost-use taken into account, prices are comparable to those of traditional flavors, it said.
The new product, which is currently being launched in every region where IFF operates, is considered Global Natural, FEMA GRAS and Kosher.
According to IFF's technical category director for beverages ED Nappen, the company has received a "tremendous" response from customers that have already tested the ingredient, including carbonated beverage, water and tea manufacturers.
The Generessence line, which was launched a decade ago, now contains over 100 flavors made only from components found within the flavor mimicked. Other flavors in the line include açai, Japanese green tea, raspberry, strawberry and lemon.