Dairy Processing -March/April 2022 - 24

FORMULATION
Solving the
sweetener equation
Processors look to find a balance between flavor
and growing health concerns from consumers.
by Donna Berry | donnaberry@dairy-food.com
R
esearch shows that year after year, consumers' attitude
towards caloric sweeteners-namely table sugar and
refined syrups-becomes more negative. This opinion
is aligned with contemporary notions of health and wellness,
where empty sweetener calories are the enemy. According to
the USDA, dairy is one of the largest sugar-using sectors in the
food industry, accounting for 7% of sugar deliveries.
" Excess sugar concerns remain front and center on
consumers' radar of ingredients to control, " said David
Wright, senior manager-marketing, Hartman Group, Bellevue,
Wash. " As we've seen for years in Hartman Group research,
sugar continues to be a key area of concern across all
dimensions of health and wellness lifestyles, ranging from
those consumers most involved to
those least involved. "
Hartman Group's report
" Health & Wellness:
Reimaging Wellbeing Amid
COVID-19 " finds that more
than half of consumers
(51%) say they are decreasing high fructose corn syrup intake,
followed by 42% who say they are avoiding or decreasing
refined sugar.
" With negative perceptions of sugar widespread,
consumers worry about both its immediate and cumulative,
long-term effects, including weight management, metabolism,
inflammation, gut health and cognition, although exactly what
those effects are will differ by how engaged consumers are
with health and wellness lifestyles, " Wright said. " Overall,
consumers are finding ways to incorporate sweetness into
their eating and drinking routines by managing occasions
and reaching for what they view as more healthful
sweetener choices. "
A HEALTHFUL APPROACH
Sweetener is a sensitive topic for dairy foods formulators.
Consumers expect products such as flavored milk, ice cream
and yogurt to taste sweet. While at the same time, they also
know that consuming too much sugar may be detrimental
to health. Then factor in a growing number of consumers
who prefer simple and short ingredients statements,
as well as natural and organic positionings, and
formulators find themselves struggling to deliver
on taste and mouthfeel while also reporting fewer
added sugars on product labels.
Many dairy processors are finding that a backto-basics
approach of sweetening simply
with sugar - just not too much - appeals
to today's shoppers. They see the word
sugar on the ingredient statement and
it resonates.
This is beneficial to processors,
as sugar's sweetening properties are
unmatched by any other ingredient. With sugar,
24 MAR-APR 2022 | DAIRYPROCESSING.COM
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Dairy Processing -March/April 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dairy Processing -March/April 2022

Dairy Processing -March/April 2022 - Intro
Dairy Processing -March/April 2022 - 1
Dairy Processing -March/April 2022 - 2
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