The new shortenings include SansTrans DF, which is made by using a specific blend of palm oil fractions selected for rapid crystallization so that coatings, such as frostings or sugar, can be applied earlier, improving factory throughput.
Loders Croklaan’s director of R&D Dr. Gerald McNeill told FoodNavigator-USA.com: “Donuts require a frying fat that’s semi-solid and as a result you can have certain defects in it. If the fat is too hard it can have a waxy feel to it, for example.”
However, he added that a donut needs to have a certain amount of waxiness – and that this is well accepted – “otherwise it will be too oily”. The problem is that oil can migrate into coatings and seep into cardboard packaging.
Trans fats in the form of partially hydrogenated oils have long been used for frying donuts because they are inexpensive, have a long shelf life and good flavor stability. But food manufacturers have been under increasing pressure to slash trans fats from their products as evidence has mounted over the past decade linking their consumption with higher risk of heart disease.
McNeill said that the company’s SansTrans shortenings can provide the same functionality as trans fats at a similar price to manufacturers.
“The idea is to use high melting point fats,” McNeill said. “By melting and cooling [palm oil] at different temperatures you can mix and match different fractions...We have identified a fraction combination that gives you a dry donut.”
Also in the new SansTrans range is Select 55, a shortening that contains palm oil along with specific soybean oil fractions to help mitigate the odor associated with palm oil that some customers may find unappealing.