Natural ingredients are now often preferred by consumers and manufacturers to synthetic ingredients, allowing for clean labels that do not list artificial additives. Food protection is no exception especially since, according to Danisco, some synthetic preservatives have been linked to allergy, increased disease risk, and antibiotic resistance. The company has served this market for some time by offering a range of ingredients aimed at replacing synthetic preservatives in foods, including cultures, plant extracts and microbials. It cites market data that says natural solutions already account for a twenty five per cent of the €1bn global market for food protectants - and the annual growth rate is between six and eight per cent, outstripping food protectants as a whole. But a spokesperson for Danisco Cultures told FoodNavigator.com that the Care4U trademark is more not just a portfolio of ingredients, but a full service that can help customers develop safe clean label products. The team at Danisco has considerable knowledge on applications, processing and regulatory requirements in different global markets, she said. The main focus of the venture is on the fresh dairy, cheese, meat, soup, sauces, dressings, oils and fats, and bakery and beverage categories. Customers will be invited to enter into a strategic partnership with Danisco, which will give them access to a complete package. In addition to expert assistance, it includes analytical support for so that the customers' can measure the efficacy of the Care4U ingredients in their consumer products. Danisco is also launching a dedicated website, to which its partnering customers will have access, containing scientific documentation of the protectants' functionalities and benefits. The Danish company claims a leading position in the natural food protectants market. The spokesperson said an internal survey had shown it to have one of the widest portfolios in the market, with good market penetration. The spokesperson agreed that this is "absolutely a top, key priority" for research and development, as work is underway on developing and launching new natural food protectants. Danisco is unveiling the Care4U label at FIE in London next week, where VP for food protection Stephane Constant will give a presentation on natural food protection.