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Ahrensburg, May 2017 – The boom in vegan meat substitutes continues. A study by market research institute Mintel shows that the greatest growth is among flexitarians with reduced consumption of meat. According to the study, last year 18 percent of Germans ate more meat alternatives than the previous year. Mintel talks of a paradigm change, as niche vegetarians turn into mass-market flexitarians, and the market potential for meat alternative products is correspondingly high. But such products are only successful if their taste and consistency compare favourably to the meat product, and if they offer health benefits and ideally also address the ongoing convenience trend. Hydrosol has developed a new stabilising and texturing system that lets manufacturers of meat alternatives address the wishes of ever broader target groups. Vegan nuggets suitable for hot consumption are a current example.

Hydrosol - Vegetarische Nuggets

What’s special about these nuggets is their meat-like texture, which is achieved with the aid of HydroTOP High Gel. “The system is based on a specific combination of hydrocolloids and fibres that act as emulsifying and stabilising components,” explains Dr Carsten Carstens, head of Product Development for meat and sausage products at Hydrosol. “First an emulsion is made with HydroTOP High Gel 30, oil and water. This stabilises the hydratised texturate through thermoreversible gelling, meaning that heating the formable mass turns it into a product that is pleasantly firm to the bite.” Treating the texturate with the HydroTOP emulsion creates a formable, slightly sticky meat analogue comparable to a ground meat mass used for meatballs and the like. Thanks to this adhesive property, vegetables with smooth surfaces like corn or peas can be worked into the mass without problems. The meat substitute mass can be individually seasoned and produced continuously on a conventional line.

HydroTOP High Gel 30 is suitable for all standard commercial wheat, soy and pea protein-based texturates. “In application, the synergies and interactions between HydroTOP and the protein texturate are used to full effect,” reports Dr Carstens. “High Gel 30 turns the fibrous structure of the texturate into a meat-like structure.” The vegan nuggets can be pan or deep-fried, and in addition to their texture they offer another clear advantage – they are very declaration-friendly. The products aren’t just vegan, they can also be advertised as free of soy and gluten. Furthermore, they use neither flavour enhancers nor phosphates.

Besides vegan nuggets, manufacturers can use HydroTOP High Gel 30 with the texturates from the Hydrosol Stabiprot series to make many other products. Examples include vegan burgers and patties, as well as vegan schnitzel with breading. All products can be deep-frozen without problems.

In addition, with High Gel 30 all other formed ground meat, fish, poultry, diced ham and similar products can be made at low cost with excellent quality. The meat and fish products have a firm bite, are juicy, and retain their shape.

Ahrensburg, October 2016 – Mayonnaise is one of the world’s most popular deli products, but its high fat content is a disadvantage from a health point of view. To reduce this without sacrificing texture, normally some of the fat is replaced with substances like starch that bind water. While economical, this procedure is undesirable in certain markets like Russia and the Middle East, since it is considered to reduce the quality. Hydrosol’s stabiliser experts have now developed a starch-free integrated compound that enables the production of high-quality, low-fat mayonnaise. The final product has a creamy, pleasantly light consistency with a very good mouth feel and excellent taste.

Hydrosol_News_stärkefreie Mayo

“Replacing fat with starch in low-fat mayonnaise products has economical as well as processing advantages. But consumers often see it as a kind of deception,” reported Dr. Dorotea Pein, Product Manager Hydrosol. “For this reason we have developed a new formulation that uses hydrocolloids and vegetable fibre to provide texture while still giving a pleasantly soft, creamy texture that can absolutely measure up to a full-fat mayonnaise.”

The new Stabimuls M30 NOS integrated compound is based on powdered egg yolk, dairy protein, vegetable fibre and hydrocolloids. It can be used to make salad creams with fat contents as low as 30 percent. Like all Hydrosol integrated compounds for mayonnaise, this new product is easy to use in manufacturing. It needs only water, seasonings, oil and vinegar. Following suitable shearing, the final product can be filled and packaged.

Hamburg, July 2016 – Growth continues at Hamburg’s Stern-Wywiol Gruppe. With an increase of 12 percent, the family-owned company made a record 444 million euros in revenues last year. Its Hydrosol subsidiary was a big part of it. Hydrosol, which specializes in custom stabilising and texturing systems, can look back on a very successful year. With a view to the future, the company is now expanding its production capacity. Managing Director Dr. Matthias Moser: “Our production plant is one of the most modern of its kind in Europe, and our capacity as it stands is 30,000 tonnes of ingredients a year. Our customers in over 50 countries expect the best, and in order to provide it to them with the highest level of innovation, flexibility and service, we are now investing in a second facility located in close proximity to the existing one. The groundbreaking will take place soon, and production will start during the coming year.”

As an independent, family-owned business Hydrosol has for many years followed a long-term growth strategy, with sustained investments at home and abroad. In addition to its production facilities, the Technology Centre is an example of this. This research and development centre has extensive test facilities and pilot plants for dairy products, deli foods, meat and fish products and other food categories, and is being continually expanded. “These foresighted investments, coupled with the flexibility and reliability of an owner-operated company and the creative expertise of our staff, are central to our success,” comments Dr. Moser.

Ahrensburg, June 2016 – A by-product of cheese manufacture is large amounts of sweet whey. This is used for many different things, including cheese specialities, whey drinks and whey powder. Hydrosol now offers another option. The company has developed a stabilising system that makes it possible and economical to create fermented whey desserts using yogurt cultures.

In some markets, to save money when making yogurt part of the milk is replaced by whey or water, but there are limits to this. The formulation must have at least 50% milk, to give the yogurt a smooth, gleaming texture and a pleasant mouth feel. With the Stabisol JOC stabilising system it is now possible to replace the milk entirely with sweet whey. The whey is mixed with fat, sugar, stabiliser and yogurt cultures, and fermented. The fat can be animal fat like cream or butter, or vegetable fat like oils, depending on availability. Instead of fresh whey, whey powder and water can be used.

Hydrosol_News-Molke-Dessert

This whey dessert is an attractive concept for European dairies focusing on the export market. Sebastian Barsch is a product developer at Hydrosol and specialises in yogurt, and notes, “With our new stabilising system we give cheese makers a double benefit. They can profitably market their excess whey, and they can also take low-cost yogurt-like desserts to market. This lets them use the increasingly positive image of whey protein to boost revenues.” Whey protein is now recognised as having very good nutritional properties. Whey is also much cheaper than milk.

Like traditional yogurt, these fermented whey desserts can be mixed with various ingredients, such as flavourings and colours added at the start of the manufacturing process, or fruit preparations added after fermentation. Through its close cooperation with its sister companies in the Stern-Wywiol Gruppe, Hydrosol can offer its customers individual consulting in this area. And not just that – with its sister company OlbrichtArom, Hydrosol can also offer all-in compounds with customer-specific flavouring.

Hamburg, May 2016 The Hamburg-based, owner-operated Stern-Wywiol Gruppe is continuing its growth course on the international ingredients market. Last year the Group made revenues of 444 million euros, again giving it a double-digit growth rate over the previous year. Its Hydrosol subsidiary has made an important contribution to this continued positive balance. This stabilising system specialist showed what its success is based on at its recent international Sales Network Event, with the motto “We make food texture swing.”

Hydrosol - Moser Eisner
Hydrosol CEO Dr. Matthias Moser and researcher Dr. Peter Eisner of the Fraunhofer Institute discuss new opportunities with lupin protein. Photo: Moser_Eisner

“If you want to expand in different markets you need to develop individual solutions for your customers, but you also need to do more,” explains Hydrosol CEO Dr. Matthias Moser. “Fast, flexible reaction to customer needs and requests are at least as important as innovation-driven new ideas that give customers new value creation opportunities.” One example is a stabilising system for making whey desserts that Hydrosol originally developed for the Latin American market. This functional system gives cheese producers a way to market their excess whey profitably by taking low-cost yogurt-like desserts to market.

In developing solutions with future potential, there is no substitute for intensive research with modern technology. Likewise, an accurate understanding of the requirements and trends in the various markets is indispensable. So at Hydrosol, Sales and Applications Research work hand in hand, as the international Sales Network Event in Hamburg demonstrated. Around 100 attendees, including sales partners, representatives and consultants from almost 40 countries, presented their successful concepts at the two-day event together with Hydrosol R&D experts. For example, to address the ongoing vegetarian trend in Western Europe, meat and fish product specialists presented all-in compounds for vegetarian and vegan alternatives to ground meat, wieners, bratwurst and Bavarian-style meatloaf.

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Product development up close – Hydrosol applications researchers present new product ideas to Sales Network Event attendees at the company’s own Technology Centre.Photo: Applications research

In the deli foods category, the focus was on new developments in the company’s extensive range of integrated compounds for mayonnaise. Mayonnaise is one of the fastest growing categories in Eastern Europe and Latin America especially. Through close cooperation between Research and Sales, and the use of innovative raw materials, Hydrosol has developed a customer-specific solution for this market that lets mayonnaise producers save money, time and resources.While trends and customer wishes in different markets vary, sometimes greatly, there are also certain similarities. “Good taste, safe products and good value for money are three central expectations that consumers in all countries share. With our stabilising systems for dairy products, deli foods and meat, sausage and fish products, we help manufacturers meet those expectations, whether in the premium segment or in the development of value-oriented products. In doing so we place great emphasis on full service. This includes the development of customised stabilising systems, joint product development and upscaling in the on-site production process. Hydrosol will also take unconventional routes if the situation requires it.

According to Dr. Moser, this flexibility is another reason for the company’s close customer relationships and international success. “The knowledge and creative potential of our people, together with modern applications research in our well-equipped Technology Centre, are among our key growth drivers. Together with our international network of 16 subsidiaries and numerous qualified foreign representatives, they enable us to meet specific customer needs in the world’s key markets.”

Ahrensburg, April 2016 – Vegetarian alternatives to meat and sausage remain a strong trend. Much of this is due to the growing number of flexitarians, people with substantially reduced meat consumption. To address this target group, Hydrosol has developed a system solution that lets manufacturers offer a wide range of meatless products, including vegetarian sausages like wieners, bockwurst, hot dogs and liver loaf, as well as vegetarian ground “meat” that can be used in various applications.

Hydrosol_News_Vegane-Bolognese

“With our all-in compound from the HydroTOP VEG series, producers can make semi-finished products for individual further processing, as well as finished products that are ready to eat,” reports Carsten Carstens, Hydrosol R&D Meat Products. “Thus, with just one system many different vegetarian ground meat alternatives are possible, that can address different customer groups and thus open up promising new marketing opportunities.” For large-scale users like cafeterias and caterers, the semi-finished products in logs or preground form provide the basis for many different foods. Industrial manufacturers can use them to produce a range of vegetarian retail items.

For example, this vegetarian ground is an excellent basis for vegetarian bolognaise sauce, hearty stews and soups, chili sin carne and lasagne. It’s also ideal for making “meat” crumbles for tacos, frozen pizza and ravioli. Like real ground meat, the meatless version is freeze-thaw stable. It is equally suitable for frozen foods, canned foods and sauces in jars. The enjoyment value is just as high – the vegetarian ground has exactly the same taste as the animal product, and fries just as crispy. The products have the familiar mouth feel that consumers are accustomed to from conventional ground meat, so meat eaters will enjoy them too.

HydroTOP VEG also meets the expectations of consumers who are mindful of their nutrition. Carsten Carstens notes, “We use soy and egg white protein. That makes this all-in compound free of dairy products, as well as gluten and phosphates. The seasoning is completely free of flavour enhancers like monosodium glutamate. And of course we use natural colours.” Production is also very straightforward. HydroTOP VEG is a hydrocolloid-protein combination with emulsifying and stabilising components. It contains all the ingredients for the complete formulation, including a mild basic seasoning that can be enhanced as desired. It needs only be stirred together with water, salt and vegetable oil, formed, and then cooked. The vegetarian ground product is then ready for further processing.

This new all-in compound allows easy production of a wide range of high-quality products that address the ongoing trend to meatless alternatives. Their high protein and low fat content meet the highest nutritional demands, while the finished products offer excellent appeal.

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Press Releases

Hydrosol adds more production capacity in Germany

Stabiliser specialist continues on growth course

Low-fat mayonnaise Hydrosol develops integrated compound without starch

High quality at all fat levels

Revenue growth through greater internationalisation

Individual success concepts for international markets

Simple production of vegetarian Bolognese and other meatless foods

Wide range of meatless alternatives to ground meat and sausage with new all-in compound

Press announcement

Alternatives for meat and dairy products – vegan integrated compounds

"innovations in Food Technology" (Issue 75, May 2017)

Meat substitutes are enjoying growing popularity. The success of modern vegan and vegetarian products is due to the fact that they offer consumers familiar flavours and textures without using meat.

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