Labeling “clean label" products is a bit paradoxical, if you consider the many potential claims: No Artificial Flavors/Colors/Preservatives, Sugar-Free, Soy-Free, Corn-Free, Non-GMO, Gluten-Free, Allergen Friendly, Raised Without Antibiotics. Simple, wholesome, clean foods could have packaging that is covered from top to bottom by claims about what’s not in the product (and often do). To make these “clean" claims, a company must understand at least five core concepts in its supply chain and manufacturing.
First, ask your suppliers to provide the documentation about from where the original ingredients were sourced. Which farm grew the corn that became the citric acid? Was that corn non-GMO? What processing aids, micro-organisms and enzymes were used to make the maltodextrin that’s a carrier in the “natural flavors" listed on the ingredient deck? A brand owner may be surprised at what it finds—or rather does not find—when asking specific questions.
Learn more about clean label food and beverage formulation in INSIDER’s Clean Label Digital Magazine.
Editor’s note: For more on effectively communicating organic and non-GMO, including labeling, certification and transparency, consider these SupplySide West education opportunities:
Steve Taormina will discuss how to effectively communicate organic and non-GMO, including labeling, certification and transparency, during the Developing and Delivering Clean Label Messaging workshop on Friday, Sept. 28 at 8:30 a.m. at SupplySide West in Las Vegas. The Workshop is underwritten by Cargill, Synergy and Tate & Lyle.
Steve Taormina is the Business Unit Manager for NSF International’s (nsf.org) Consumer Values Verified division, located in Boulder, Colorado.