3 Cargill innovations that support healthier diets
September 26, 2018
As consumer preferences and nutrition requirements change, Cargill is helping food and beverage makers adapt their products.
Cargill, a producer of ingredients in many items found on grocery store shelves, has more than 1,000 food scientists and technologists that work with food and beverage companies worldwide to formulate healthier foods. Our experts work closely with customers to maintain the product’s taste, convenience, shelf life and affordability.
Here are three Cargill innovations aimed at health-conscious consumers:
1. Alternative sweeteners
According to a recent International Food and Ingredients Council study, three in four consumers say they’re trying to limit or avoid sugars.
But they still want sweetness. As the focus on sugar reduction intensifies, Cargill’s new EverSweet™ sweetener, which is made with the same sweet parts that are found in the stevia leaf, offers a new choice for zero-calorie food and beverages.
The market for low- and zero-calorie sweeteners, historically dominated by artificial sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose and saccharin, has seen a rise in alternatives like stevia and erythritol. These alternatives are gaining popularity in healthy snacks, soft drinks, dairy products and cereals to name a few.
Cargill’s fermentation process for EverSweet requires a simple sugar source, which can be sourced from sugar cane or corn, and a specially crafted baker’s yeast to produce the best-tasting steviol glycosides found in the leaves of the stevia plant. The steviol glycosides react with sweetness receptors on the tongue like sugar does, but without calories or blood sugar spikes.
2. Low-saturate canola oil
Already relatively low in saturated fat compared to other oils such as palm or coconut, Cargill saw the potential for canola oil to have even less saturated fat. So we created a variety of canola seeds that delivers oil containing 4.5 percent saturated fat, a significant reduction from the 7 percent saturated fat content that is standard in most canola oil.
For the past five years, Cargill has been working with farmers in Canada to field test the latest generation of seeds as we worked to perfect the genetic profile. The next generation of Clear Valley® low-saturate high-oleic canola oil is now available for food makers to test.
We didn’t stop there. Earlier this year, Cargill announced a partnership with Precision BioSciences to use its ARCUS® genome-editing technology to further reduce saturated fat in canola oil. It’s an exciting development because products made with the new oil– particularly fried foods – may be able to use front-of-package nutrient content claims on saturated fat levels, such as “Low in Saturated Fat,” depending on their overall nutritional profile.
3. Low-sodium solutions
Research indicates that a diet with lots of potassium-rich foods may help alleviate conditions such as hypertension. Cargill’s Potassium Pro® potassium chloride functions much like salt and provides a salty taste, so it’s an easy swap that can lower the sodium content in a wide range of foods by up to 50 percent while increasing potassium levels.
Alberger® salt crystals, a Cargill exclusive product, are a hollow pyramid shape instead of the traditional cube granulated salt shape. The large surface area and low bulk density allow the salt to adhere better to a product like French fries and Alberger's rapid solubility provides an initial salty flavor burst with less sodium.