A new partnership between Heartland Harvest (Illinois) and Harvest Innovations (Iowa) is set to deliver new gluten-free pasta to the food industry, tapping into a substantially growing sector.
Nicole Tomba, VP of sales and marketing for Harvest Innovations, told us that the use of the company’s gluten free flours have increased “from very little to a significant portion of our business.
“We believe the gluten free opportunity in pasta is particularly good since most of the product is currently made in Europe and imported.
“Gluten free products are considered medical foods in Europe, and are much more expansive than what is currently available in the United States. Harvest Innovation’s development team is very knowledgeable about the methods used in Europe to make gluten free products and have brought those technologies to the United States.”
Over the last four years, Harvest Innovations has launched a number of ingredients including, HI Concentrate, HIsolate and EggOut that have allowed food manufacturers to abstain from using GMO’s or chemically processed soy proteins. The company’s non-GMO and organic, gluten free food ingredients are already used by some of the largest food manufacturers in North America, said the company.
“The demand for non-GMO has grown dramatically in the last three years,” said Tomba. “Whole Foods and Trader Joes have had a significant effect on this market. Due to the pressure of the economy, organic has not grown as quickly as Non GMO, which offers less expensive legumes, pulses and grains.”
The company starts with non-GMO or organic soybeans sourced from North America, she said, and they do not use soy products processed by any other company.
“Harvest Innovation ingredients go into numerous products that are part of the Non-GMO project,” she added. “We have conducted research at the University of Illinois that verified that our process does not affect the GMO markers; therefore, Harvest Innovations is permitted to PCR test the finished product for the Non-GMO project as opposed to the incoming beans.”
Dennis Bunck, COO of Heartland Harvest, said that “the two companies will join forces in their manufacturing and technical capabilities to provide exciting new gluten free pasta options to the market that are not only gluten free, but nutritious and great tasting”.
Harvest Innovations’ Tomba added that a “combination of Harvest Innovations expertise in gluten free flours and pasta manufacturing along with Heartland Harvest’s expertise in processing has permitted a significant advancement in gluten free products manufactured in the United States.”
The strategic partnership will also deliver new chemical-free protein crisps for use in cereals and bar applications.
Heartland Harvest is in the process of completing its new operation facility in Kankakee, IL. This expansion will enable production to double from current capacity, said the company.
Heartland Harvest has also established a state-of-the-art research facility that will permit the development and testing of new and unique food ingredients.
“Combined with the leading scientific team of Harvest Innovations, this facility will permit both companies to significantly increase the pace of development time from concept to market,” added the company.