You’re not alone. Products with natural and simple labels are in greater demand than ever, and it looks like clean label products are sticking around for awhile. At first, it may seem overwhelming and difficult to remove ingredient standards from formulas. But fear not, it can be done! First things first,
What is a clean label?
Well, there’s no FDA definition, but it generally fills these criteria:
- A simple and short ingredient list
- Ingredients that are “all natural” and contain no chemicals, no artificial preservatives, color agents, or flavor agents
- Minimally processed ingredients
- Ingredients that are easy to understand
- Ingredients that appear in your kitchen cupboard
How do I do that?
First, remove chemical ingredients such as common emulsifiers and artificial ingredients. Here are a few examples of ones to stay away from:
- potassium lodate
- calcium peroxide
- benzyl peroxide (flour bleaching agent)
- emulsifiers (DATEM, sodium stearoyl lactylate, calcium stearoyl lactylate, ethoxylated mono- and di-glycerides, PGME, polysorbate, mono- and di-glycerol, etc.)
- calcium propionate
- sorbic acid
- artificial flavor agents
- artificial color agents
- partially hydrogenated oil
- high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)
Then, find natural alternatives that get the job done
With a big consumer focus on clean label, the baking industry has been working hard to find solutions. Part of it involves adjusting the process, like longer fermentation times to help with dough development. However, most of it hinges on ingredients. From natural mold inhibitors like cultured wheat, to natural dough conditioners in the form of enzymes, to alternative emulsifiers, it is possible to create a quality, delicious clean label product.
Want to learn more about innovative ingredient solutions for clean labels?
Come hear me speak at the Clean Label Conference by Global Food Forums, March 25-36 in Itasca, Illinois! It’s the industry’s only product development event dedicated to providing practical, impartial, “how-to” formulation advice to R&D and applied food scientists striving to create simplified ingredient labels.
Other presenters at the conference include:
- Clean Label: Shifting Consumer Perceptions and Evolving Innovation by Lynn Dornblaser, Director of Innovation & Insight, Mintel
- Successes and Challenges of Clean Label in Food and Beverage: An Industry Perspective by Philippe Rousset, Ph.D., White Coffee and Creamers Technology Lead, Global Clean Label Strategic Network Leader, Nestlé Product Technology Center Beverage
- Clean Labels – Don’t Forget Your Chemical Hazards by Grace Bandong, MSc, Global Scientific Strategy Leader, Contaminants, Eurofins Food Integrity and Innovations
- Dietary Fibers, Cleaner Formulations & the New Nutrition Facts Labels by David Plank, Ph.D., Managing Principal, WRSS Food & Nutrition Insights/Sr. Research Fellow, Dept. of Food Science & Nutrition, University of Minnesota
- Rethinking Formulation Approaches for Simplified Ingredient Statement and Cleaner Labels by Webb Girard, MSc, Director of Technology, CuliNex, LLC
- Hydrocolloids: Clean Label Tools for Plant-Based Formulating by Nesha Zalesny, MBA, Technical Consultant, IMR International
- Traceability & Transparency: Steps to Meet Consumer Expectations for a Clean label Product by Mark Haas, CEO, The Helmsman Group
- Hurdle Technology: Multifactorial Food Preservation for High Quality Foods by Jairus R. David, Ph.D., Principal Consultant, JRD Food Technology Consulting, LLC
- Innovations in Dairy Based Ingredients for Clean Label Solutions by Rohit Kapoor, Ph.D., Vice President, Product Research, National Dairy Council
- Plus: 21 fifteen-minute Technology Snapshots on New Clean Label Ingredients