Showcasing the ingredient at IFT in Las Vegas after two years in the making, DSM’s Bakezyme is available in five different enzyme classes depending on manufacturers’ needs – amylase, protease, xylanase, glucose oxidase and amyloglucosidase.
Amylase, an anti-staling enzyme, for example, will retain the softness for at least nine days.
Bakezyme tackles the two biggest complaints associated with gluten-free bread, global business manager for baking at DSM Fokke Van den Berg said – hardness and dryness, keeping the bread fresher and softer for longer. There is also a marked improvement in the softness from day one, he said, with a fluffier texture.
“Gluten-free is a challenging application because it’s gluten that brings the softness and binds the water. Technically, it makes a lot of sense that gluten-free bread is not as soft and moist as regular bread," Van den Berg said.
“But there is literally direct competition from regular bread so gluten-free bread needs to watch out. It needs to be as good.”
DSM tested Bakezyme on two types of dough – oat and a mixture of potato and rice – with each requiring a slightly different formulation for the same results.
The enzyme has a slight premium due to the higher costs incurred by DSM to ensure it is gluten-free but overall the price is “very similar” to other enzyme ingredients, particularly because only a tiny amount is needed in a recipe: one kilo of Bakezyme can be used to produce 10,000 kilos of bread.
Unlike most baker’s enzymes that are derived from wheat, Bakezyme is made of fermentation-derived microorganisms added to rice flour, making it suitable for coeliacs and those with a gluten intolerance. As the enzymes are deactivated during the cooking process, the ingredient is considered to be a processing aid and so is not required to be listed on-pack.
A new innovation opportunity
Results from a survey commissioned by DSM, involving over 1000 individuals from the US and the UK in April this year, showed that over a quarter of British respondents (28%) and over one third of Americans (34%) eat gluten-free bread at least a few times a week, as well as standard wheat bread.
“This demonstrates that gluten-free bread competes with regular bread on market shelves, which signifies on opportunity for the category to gain market share from ordinary bread,” it said.
Growth figures for the gluten-free category suggest that the future is bright for this segment. Euromonitor predicts the gluten-free retail market will be worth $4.7 billion (€4.1bn) globally by 2020 compared to $1.7bn (€1.5bn) in 2011, while over the past three years, gluten-free bread has seen a net increase of 64% in the UK and 72% in the US.
“The insights from the consumer survey were interesting because with gluten-free we always thought it was a case of ‘either or’ – either completely gluten-free or not,” Van den Berg told us. “But we also asked would you be interested in a gluten-reduced bread and the majority of consumers said yes, they would consider it. Potentially that’s a middle ground innovation opportunity in the gluten-free category – ‘bread lite’ – a bit like reduced sugar or fat.”
The company expects most demand to come from the US and UK as well as other European countries, but the gluten-free trend is also spreading to Brazil, Turkey and Morocco, said Van den Berg.