The ingredient will help manufacturers to develop iron-rich foods for vegetarians, Frutarom said.
A new ingredient from Frutarom Health will offer a new approach to tackling iron deficiency among vegan and vegetarian consumers.
AB-Fortis is a natural clean-label addition that offers a patented encapsulated iron system to support vegans and vegetarians, as well as women of childbearing years, who commonly suffer from a deficiency of iron. The ingredients has a high iron content and can be formulated into a full range of food and beverage applications, Frutarom said.
Studies performed in young women and adults have shown that vegetarian and vegan men and women have lower iron stores than meat eaters.
“Because iron isn’t as easily absorbed from plant sources, the recommended intake of iron for vegetarians is almost double that of non-vegetarians,” explains Wouter Haazen, product manager for Frutarom Health. “It’s hard to increase iron intake from food alone,” he added.
Traditional iron supplements have a strong metallic taste and powerful oxidative properties – both undesirable for foods, Frutarom continued. They also are hard to digest, and sometimes cause nausea, constipation, gastric distress, and headaches.
AB-Fortis is produced by a patented process to provide stable encapsulation with minimal release of free iron into the food matrix. The spherical gelation of ferric saccharate by calcium alginate results in an encapsulated iron salt with an iron content of 40%. Its excellent suitability for food matrices and consumer acceptability was recently demonstrated in a successful bakery product targeted to children and launched in Spain by a market leader in this segment, the company added.
“These numbers confirm the need for a high-concentration iron solution for vegan and vegetarian foods,” explained Haazen. “This microencapsulated iron ingredient allows fortification without changing appearance, palatability, or flavor of foods. AB-Fortis is stable under high pressures and temperatures, staying intact during processing. Further, it is highly bioavailable, as shown by a recent human clinical study.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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