Nestlé has introduced a new sugar reduction technology – which uses an enzymatic process – that can reduce intrinsic sugar in ingredients such as milk, malt and fruit juices by up to 30%.
The new versatile and cost-effective technology has a minimal impact on taste and texture. It can be applied across different product categories, with benefits beyond sugar reduction, Nestlé claims. The patented technology can be used to produce low lactose and skimmed milk-based products, while reducing total sugars.
The sugar-reduced ingredients can be used in recipes for various products and do not require the addition of sweeteners or bulking agents to replace the volume of the eliminated sugar.
Additionally, when the sugar reduction method is applied to milk-based products, it increases prebiotic fibres. Initial clinical studies have shown that the fibres support the growth of multiple types of beneficial bacteria leading to a favourable microbiome composition in healthy adults.
Stefan Palzer, Nestlé’s chief technology officer, said: “Sugar reduction across our portfolio remains a top priority. This new technology is a true breakthrough, as we can reduce sugar without adding sweeteners while preserving a great taste, all at a minimal cost increase. In addition, our scientists discovered that the sugar reduction generates prebiotic fibres that support the microbiome, which is an additional benefit. We are now accelerating the global roll-out across formats and categories.”
The sugar reduction was first piloted in cocoa and malt-based ready-to-drink beverages in Southeast Asia and over the last year, Nestlé has introduced it in factory lines for cocoa and malt-based powdered beverages – such as Milo – across several countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Since 2021, the sugar reduction technology has been applied to over 200,000 tons of cocoa and malt-based beverages, with Nestlé stating that other product categories such as dairy powders will follow.
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