Top Industry Happenings
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New Hires, Ingredients, Technologies Top Industry News

Among recent industry news, Kemin expanded its protein-focused sales team and a licensing agreement may spur innovation in cocoa-related products.

A hand-held optical reader brings satellite imaging technologies to the service of secure product authentication, and new ingredients joined the market. Read on for more industry news.

New Hires

Kemin announced the addition of three new members to its recently developed protein-focused sales team. Travis Krause has been named protein business manager, a newly created position. John Wallace and Doug Mitchell have joined the company as technical sales managers for the upper Midwest and Southeast regions of North America, respectively.

As protein business manager, Krause will be responsible for current sales and business growth with top protein customers in North America. He has been with Kemin since July 2013 and was formerly technical sales manager for the upper Midwest. With more than 10 years of industry experience, he possesses technical expertise with ingredient use in production settings and a strong focus in product development, quality control and process improvement. He has a master’s degree in meat science from Iowa State University and has worked in technical service, R&D and sales in the food industry.

Technical sales managers Wallace and Mitchell will focus on growing the company’s business in the protein industry in their respective territories. Wallace has a background in food science, including positions in process control, production operations management and application technology. He earned his bachelor’s degree in microbiology and chemistry from University of Wisconsin–La Crosse.

Mitchell has more than 20 years of sales and technical experience in the meat and poultry industry, most recently as a territory sales manager/broker representing a number of companies offering diverse product lines. He graduated from the University of Tennessee with a bachelor’s degree in animal science and a master’s in food technology and science.

AAK is pleased to introduce Ramesh Reddy, Ph.D., and Bryan Petrak as the newest members of its innovation team. Reddy serves as customer innovation manager and leads customer innovation activities for chocolate and confectionery fat (CCF) segments. He is responsible for the Fats & Oils Chemistry Lab in Port Newark, New Jersey, as well as the new AAK Innovation Center scheduled to open in 2016 in Edison.

Reddy came to AAK with nearly seven years of experience in confectionery, lipid chemistry and health research. Previously, he served as R&D manager at the Institute for Food Safety and Health. He also worked as a post-doctoral scientist in lipid chemistry and health research at the University of Arkansas and as a product development specialist in Nestle's confectionery group. He holds a bachelor’s degree in food science and technology from A.N.G.R. Agricultural University in India, a master’s in food science and technology from Virginia Tech and a Ph.D. in food science and nutrition from Ohio State University. Reddy has written more than 40 peer-reviewed publications and has an issued patent. He has been very active in the Institute of Food Technologists and led his team to the IFT College Bowl National Championship Award in 2008.

As customer innovation applications specialist, Petrak will report to Reddy and provide further support to customer innovation activities for the CCF segment through development and formulation of value-adding vegetable oil solutions. A certified food scientist and culinologist, he brings more than a decade of experience to the team from companies such as HJ Heinz and Tsudis Chocolate Co. Most recently, while at Nugo Nutrition, Petrak lead the R&D department in the formulation of new products such as nutritional bars and snacks. He has a master’s degree in food science from Kansas State University, a bachelor’s in biology from Harding University and an associate’s in culinary arts from Johnson and Wales University.

Terry Thomas, president, AAK USA Inc. said, “Our goal at AAK is to work with our customers to provide unique answers to their product development challenges and deliver real results. To better reflect this position, we also recently changed our tagline to ‘We are AAK – the co-development company.’"

AAK also recently received the Natural Products Association (NPA) Industry Champion Award. The award recognizes notable contributions to the natural products industry above and beyond commercial success.

Licensing Agreement

The Barry Callebaut Group signed a licensing agreement with the Naturex Group. In April 2015, the European Commission approved the extension of Barry Callebaut’s existing health claim on cocoa flavanols from cocoa powders to cocoa flavanols from cocoa extracts (Regulation (EU) 2015/539). The group obtained the right to use the health claim “cocoa flavanols help maintain the elasticity of blood vessels, which contributes to normal blood flow" for food supplement applications fitting into delivery forms such as capsules and tablets containing high-flavanol cocoa extracts.

For a period of five years until April 2020, Barry Callebaut is licensing its approved 13.5 EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) health claim on cocoa flavanols for cocoa extract products to Naturex. As licensee, Naturex is permitted to apply this proprietary health claim to its food supplement solutions and its B2B clients will be also allowed to duplicate it on their marketed end products.

 As part of the agreement, Barry Callebaut will supply cocoa beans naturally containing high amounts of flavanols, from which Naturex will produce a pure cocoa extract and market an innovative solution with the proprietary health claim. It will be positioned as one of the company’s flagship food supplement products, hitting the European market in early 2016.

New Security Reader

TruTag Technologies Inc. announced the release of a new high-performance reader at the 2015 Active and Intelligent Packaging Industry Association (AIPIA) World Congress in Utrecht, Holland. Steven Yoder, TruTag’s director of business development, also presented on the latest advancements in security features for food and drug packaging.

The new Model 4100 hand-held optical reader brings satellite imaging technologies to the service of secure product authentication. Powered by a cloud-connected, solid-state imaging and processing engine, in a few seconds, the unit can authenticate thousands of medicines, electronic components, industrial parts, packaged goods and other items marked with TruTag® microtags. The latter are dust-sized particles made of silicon dioxide and embedded with customizable spectral data.

New Ingredient Introduced

In Paris at Fi Europe, Dec. 1 to 3, Lycored debuted its Dry Tomato Pulp ingredient. It offers the combination of an authentically fresh and vibrant red color with a stable texture for red sauces (including pasta sauces), ketchups and soups. Dry Tomato Pulp does not turn brown, and is ideal for achieving color consistency when facing variations caused by seasonality in tomato crops. It also works well as a natural colorant and texture improver in meat-based products such as sausages, in which many food colorants or starches are not permitted.

Kava Conference

Applied Food Sciences Inc. (AFS) attended the International Conference on Kava (KAVA2015) in Honolulu, where the state of the industry for kava sold within the United States and global markets was discussed at length. Topics included addressing public health concerns, defining quality standards, and reviewing the potential benefits within the functional food and supplement industry in bringing a better kava to the market.

AFS is working on creating a safer kava to bring the to the U.S. market while providing a scientifically validated method for the quantification of kavalactones, which allow quality control (QC) laboratories around the world to obtain reliable and reproducible results.

Supply Agreement

KonaRed Corp.signed an exclusive supply agreement with biotech discovery researcher and whole food ingredient supplier VDF FutureCeuticals (VDF FC). The new agreement, under which KonaRed gains full use and protection under VDF FC’s global coffee fruit IP platform, greatly strengthens KonaRed’s pre-existing relationship with VDF FC.

Under the terms of the new agreement, which has a 5-year term and renews automatically, KonaRed will serve as VDF FC’s exclusive supply source for U.S.-grown Kona coffee fruit. VDF FC, in turn, will manufacture and market a line of 100 percent U.S.-grown coffee fruit-based ingredients, including dried fruit (pulp) and whole cherry powders, juice concentrates and extracts to the food, beverage, cosmetics, nutritional and dietary supplement industries.

New Equipment

The employee owners of Douglas Machine Inc. launched the Stratum™ line of robotic palletizers. Systems dispense and convey pallets, manage case delivery, place slip and tier sheets, and utilize robotics to palletize cases. Designed to be integrated with Douglas packing equipment, Stratum palletizers complete the packaging process from start to finish.

Personnel and Ingredient News

Solix Algredients Inc. appointed Al Powers, former CEO of NOW Health Group Inc., to its board of directors. A pioneer in the natural products industry, he’s spent more than four decades in health food retailing, defending the rights of consumers to buy natural products, and working with industry trade associations.

Powers is also on the board of the Natural Products Association, the Council for Responsible Nutrition, and the Board for Certification of Nutrition Specialists; and continues to serve on several NOW board committees.

In addition, Solix Algredients has repositioned as a B2B supplier of high-quality natural ingredients derived from microalgae for the nutrition and personal care markets. As such, the company introduced Solasta™ natural astaxanthin extract, produced from the microalga Haematococcus pluvialis.

The product is non-GMO, vegetarian and extracted in the United States.

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