Baking & Snack - August 2018 - 77

Extended Shelf Life

the cost

Mold inhibitors, both natural and synthetic, help bakers achieve an
extended shelf life. But switching to clean label comes with some cost.
by Charlotte Atchley


On something as simple as a loaf of bread, consumer demands have become complex and often conflicting. As
people become more informed about food ingredients
and their nutritional value, that information is driving
purchasing decisions. However, American shoppers also
want foods that meet their needs for convenience and
staying power. These preferences also don't overshadow
the need for tasty bread at an affordable price. Cleaner
ingredient lists, extended shelf life, quality and affordability don't always play nice together.
"Today, industry demands range from traditional,
tried-and-true mold inhibition solutions to the clean
label alternatives preferred by many consumers, all
while maintaining desired mold-free shelf life and eating qualities such as softness, freshness and even flavor," said Paul Bright, innovation manager, AB Mauri
North America.
A label-friendly mold inhibitor might not be as effective as traditional ingredients, or it may be effective but
have a negative impact on product quality or jack up the
final product's price. Sometimes consumers will forgive
these compromises, but sometimes they won't. Bakers

must decide what they are willing to trade, and ingredient suppliers push the boundaries of what clean label
mold inhibitors can do.
"Due to the higher demand for clean-label products,
mold inhibitors have needed to expand further than the
traditional use of calcium propionate to extend shelf
life," said Ken Skrzypiec, Eastern vice-president of sales,
Brolite Products. "There are now more varieties of raw
materials being cultures, allowing for the elimination
of allergens. There are more enzyme and extract blends
being used, too. These mold inhibitors must be used to
not only prevent mold but also to extend the quality and
taste of the product."

Encapsulation technology
enables the use of organic
acids as mold inhibitors while
minimizing some of their
negative impacts.
Olya Detry - Shutterstock

Challenged by the label
Mold inhibitors can be split into two categories: synthetic and natural. Still the most effective mold inhibitor
for bread, calcium propionate is a synthetic ingredient.
However, the high levels of calcium propionate necessary to achieve extended shelf life can have a negative
impact on the final product, according to Jan van Eijk,
PhD, research director, baking ingredients, Lallemand / August 2018 Baking & Snack 77

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