AIT Ingredients is innovating with its new Eat Healthy Pulses range of premixes, developed in conjunction with Soufflet Alimentaire and the Pôle Bakery Soufflet, to meet the growing demand for products that are high in protein.
According to two recent surveys, 34% of French people (1) now claim to be flexitarians – i.e. consuming less meat and
fish, in favour of vegetables – and 75% of consumers (2) are trying to increase the protein content in their diet.
Given this development, food processing companies are starting to develop a range of plant protein-based products, especially pulse-based. These pulses are an ideal source of protein and fibre, and have a nutritious, natural and healthy product image. The top three include chickpeas, lentils and beans. “In the Bakery Products market, certain manufacturers are already offering sandwich loaves made with plant protein, in the form of flour or pieces of vegetables, in Northern Europe, Germany, the UK, USA and Canada”, notes Fatiha Hanine, Product Manager at AIT Ingredients.
In France, for several years now the Soufflet Group has been developing French supply chains for pulses such as lentils and chickpeas, with Soufflet Agriculture and Soufflet Alimentaire. The former supports farmers, from growing advice to on-farm procurement, and the latter adds value to plant protein by processing the pulses (drying or cooking them or turning them into flour).
FOR BREAD THAT’S HIGH IN PROTEIN AND FIBRE
Backed up by this expertise, AIT Ingredients asked the Pôle Bakery Soufflet to develop premixes that are high in protein (see box). “At every stage of development, we checked and approved the various bread formulations in terms of appearance, smell and taste, whilst also verifying their protein content”, says Fatiha Hanine.
Based on this research, two premixes were selected for inclusion in the Eat Positiv range. The first, Eat Healthy Pulses (photo), containing flour made from chickpeas, split peas, yellow lentils and carrot powder, produces a classic loaf with a light crumb. The second, Eat Healthy Pulses & Co, is more colourful and creative, and includes whole lentils, to add a crunchy touch, and parsnip powder for a delicately sweet flavour. These two soya-free, 100% plant protein-based premixes can be used to make bread, sandwich loaves, milk bread or brioche, and can be classed as “high in protein and fibre”.
“These new launches, revealed at the IBA trade show in Munich in September, have had an excellent reception with lots of requests for samples”, says Fatiha Hanine.
“They’ve also been tested in cookies, to be presented at the Food Matters Live show in London.”
(1) Survey conducted by Kantar Worldpanel on behalf of Meatlab Charal (12/2017).
(2) Survey conducted by PAI (2017).