FNU: What’s new in the world of natural mold inhibitors?
CS: There’s a real need for a more effective natural mold inhibitor that doesn’t have a negative sensory impact, so in 2021, we’re planning to launch a cultured dextrose [produced via the controlled fermentation of dextrose] mold inhibitor that is more effective at a lower inclusion rate. What’s available on the market right now is not working for manufacturers, so we’re excited about this new technology as it will allow us to have a much higher active delivery without sensory issues.
FNU: You’ve recently launched a new antioxidant ingredient?
CS: A few years back we launched GT-FORT, an oil-soluble green tea extract [which can be used as an alternative to traditional tocopherols and replace synthetic antioxidants such as TBHQ], but it is quite a lot more expensive than synthetics.
FORTIUM RVC [the latest product, which combines rosemary extract and ascorbic acid to delay the onset of lipid oxidation in snacks and baked goods] still allows manufacturers to remove TBHQ and protect their shelf-life but at a more intermediate price point.
FNU: You’ve recently launched some new products for tortilla makers?
CS: We entered the bakery space with dry blends last year with four products [TillaPack batch pack solutions for flour tortillas; TillaSoft dough conditioners and softeners for flour tortillas; TillaZyme enzyme gum blends for corn tortillas; and SHIELD mold inhibitors for corn and flour tortillas]. TillaZyme enzyme and gum blends can do a lot of things, from improve foldability and rollabilty to machinability. Enzymes can also extend shelf life and retain moistness.
FNU: You’ve got a suite of branded health ingredients targeting the dietary supplement market spanning weight management, immune health, eye health and cognitive function. Could these also be used in food applications?
CS: We as a food team are looking from a long-term research perspective to see if there are ways we can utilize beta glucan for immune support and lutein [for eye health] in baked goods as part of our drop-in batch pack and premix offerings. But we want to make sure that you can still get those benefits through the baking cycle and intense heat and processing.
FNU: How has COVID-19 impacted some of the markets in which you operate?
CS: Some customer projects have been paused, and a lot of meat processing plants have been disrupted and that could impact us in the coming months [many of Kemin’s solutions are used in the meat industry]. On the protein side of things, about 70% of our business goes into foodservice, so things like fast food chains not offering all-day breakfasts can also have significant impact as less product is going to spice blenders. But then we've also seen an uptick in the [retail] bakery business for things like tortillas.