Ocean Spray puts the cranberry into mooncakes
in marketing cranberry-related food and drink ingredients in Asia
has led to the launch of cranberry-flavoured Chinese mooncakes.
While cranberries have for a long time been used as a superfood ingredient in the EU and the US, manufacturers are now starting combine "healthy" ingredients with traditional foods in Asia. The mooncake has been developed using the company's sweetened dried cranberries, an innovation that brings a modern twist to a time-honoured delicacy. The mooncake filling is manufactured by China-based ChengDe JinLi Food, and the treats are expected to be distributed throughout the country during the Mid-Autumn festival, which takes place to honour the mythical moon Goddess of Immortality. Although the festival remains an in important date in the Chinese calendar, in recent years mooncake manufacturers have had to face the problem of declining demand as consumers shun the high fat delicacy in favour of healthier options. Traditionally the cakes are made from lotus seed paste and yolks from salted duck eggs, along with any combination of other ingredients such as duck, pork and mushroom, together with considerable amounts of lard and sugar. Combining these ingredients is an elaborate and labour-intensive process, which means that, as well as being high in calories, they also tend to be expensive. ChengDe JinLi Food CEO Mr. Zhuang said that the new filling had proved particularly popular with younger consumers because of the novelty factor it gave the traditional delicacy, while emphasising the positive image it has for health conscious Chinese consumers. "Cranberry gives the mooncake an appealing colour and taste, as well as the well-known health benefits of antioxidant and anti-adhesion," he said. "The SDCs also adds an interesting texture, which consumers love." Ocean Spray has been increasing worldwide production and distribution of its dried cranberry ingredient after research showed that it carries the same sort of anti-bacterial properties as that found in cranberry juice. Since then it is has been appearing in a wide range of processed foods and snacks, and has become a particularly popular ingredient in baked goods.