Blue is a popular color for fruit flavors like blueberry or fun flavors like bubble gum and blue raspberry, whereas most colored mint lozenges benefit from a blue blend to achieve flavors like wintergreen and cool mint.
Blue, however, is notoriously scarce in the natural color palette, and there is only one globally accepted natural source of blue color. It comes from spirulina, also well-known in the food supplement market as a “super food”. Stable in many applications, standard spirulina formulations meet their match in boiled candy’s tough production conditions. If manufacturers with global ambitions can’t use spirulina, their only option may be artificial colors.
Protecting the color during boiling
Chr Hansen said that this technical challenge is now solved with the global launch of FruitMax Blue 1506 WS from Chr Hansen Natural Colors. The Chr Hansen R&D and application team have developed a unique, liquid blue that protects the color in that instant it hits the extremely hot candy mass.
“Some of the best spirulina-based products, until now, needed to be pre-dispersed at production, which can be messy, difficult and inefficient for the producers,” explains Lotte Jeppesen, global industry business manager, Confectionery. “We have seen a built-up demand for precisely this product – it’s an easy and convenient solution for all types of boiled sweets, and it performs well in both sugar-free and sugar-based applications.”
The fact is, even in sugar-based categories, manufacturers win with natural and cleaner formulations. Hard candy is perhaps the most price-sensitive confectionery category, but also in this segment, consumers increasingly want natural and healthy ingredients, in even their most indulgent moments.
“We are excited to put a product on the market that caters to this need. Our new patent-pending solution will be especially appealing to health-conscious brands using other natural ingredients, like menthol in lozenges,” concludes Jeppesen.
Copenhagen based Chr Hansen is a natural color provider that combines 140 years of unique application and regulatory expertise. With an extensive global presence and the broadest natural color portfolio in the industry, the company claims to bring ideas, expertise, and solutions – from the first product brief to the supermarket shelves.