Fi Global Insights 2021 Trend Guide
Highlights from Fi Europe CONNECT 2020
Fi Gobal insights
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Contents Meet our charity partner: The Hunger Project . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Safety first: Transparency tops 2021 food trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 interview with LuAnn Williams, Global Insights Director, Innova Market Insights Emerging flavour trends from the food service industry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 interview with Lizzy Freier, Senior Research Manager, Menu, Technomic Mintel: Specialised nutrition in a post-Covid world . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 interview with Rick Miller, Food and Drink Associate Director, Specialised Nutrition, Mintel What’s next for the sports nutrition market? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 interview with Mike Hughes, Head of Research and Insight, FMCG gurus Fi Europe Innovation Awards 2020 Finalists and Winners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Fi Global Startup Innovation Challenge 2020 Finalists and Winners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Leveraging the power of ‘fungal factories’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 interview with Ricky Cassini, CEO and Co-founder, Michroma An invisible solution to the glaring food waste problem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Interview with Efrat Ferri, CEO, Sufresca Engineering novel enzymes is key to creating healthier food . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 interview with Gideon Lapidoth, CEO and CTO, Enzymit Innovation Tours . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 European sleep and cognitive health trends 2020 infographic, FMCG Gurus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 European immunity trends 2020 and beyond infographic, FMCG Gurus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
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Safety first: Transparency tops 2021 food trends interview with LuAnn Williams, Global Insights Director, Innova Market Insights Supply chain transparency will dominate food and beverage trends in 2021 as consumers seek safe and reassuring foods, according to Innova Market Insights – but discovery is another major theme. In light of the global health crisis, shoppers are looking for increased transparency to meet ongoing demand for clean label, ethical and sustainable foods, and there is still plenty of room for new food experiences in the market research organisation’s latest annual trends report. “If you think about transparency, and even to some extent modern nostalgia, consumers are looking for reassurance; they want safety,” said Lu Ann Williams, Director of Innovation at Innova Market Insights, citing two of its top ten predictions for 2021. She highlighted that business is booming for many big food companies as consumers seek foods that they know and trust to be safe. Meanwhile, as sources of fun became limited for many people in 2020, learning to cook and increased experimentation in the kitchen led consumers to revisit beloved family recipes and give them a modern makeover – perhaps a plant-forward version of Grandma’s meatloaf, for instance.
LuAnn Williams Global Insights Director Innova Market Insights
Food manufacturers are catching on. Williams gives the example of crispy-coated meat croquettes, a Dutch specialty. Recently, McDonald’s released a plant-based version in the Netherlands, giving the nostalgic food item a modern twist.
Evolving trends At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, Innova carried out a 12-country survey and found that trends such as plant-forward and hybrid food development – or ‘product mashups’ – look set to evolve and continue. “Plant-based is interesting because this is the third year when it is at the top of our list. At the beginning, it was plant milks and then meat alternatives.” Now, she suggests the plant-based trend is moving away from just imitating existing products. “It is splitting into a thousand little pieces,” she said. “…Plant-based will also move into things that are completely different. It will be a whole new generation of things we haven’t even thought about yet.” Product mashups are also becoming more adventurous. The trend started with the cronut a few years ago, a croissantdonut hybrid. Now, mainstream companies like Post and Dunkin Donuts have collaborated on a coffee-flavoured cereal, while in China, Pizza Hut and tea brand Lelecha teamed up to create a drinkable pizza, featuring peach flavoured cheese tea in a panstyle cheese pizza crust, topped with diced peach and dragon fruit.
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Beyond the major industry players, smaller food service outlets, restaurants and bars have had to branch out into new areas in light of Covid-related restrictions, too. Innova’s ‘Omnichannel Eating’ trend reflects this, with home cooking, meal kits, expanded delivery services and more sophisticated ingredients on the rise. “[Companies] found new ways to connect with their customers,” Williams said.
Holistic approach to wellness Other new trends, such as ‘Mood: The Next Occasion’, ‘In Tune with Immune’, ‘Tailored to Fit’ and ‘Nutrition Hacking’, reflect a renewed interest in health and personalised nutrition, whether for physical or mental wellbeing. “We are seeing very rapid growth in products that promote sleep or some kind of well-being,” Williams said, adding that both Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have made recent introductions in this area. “We think mood is the next occasion,” she said. “It comes back to this holistic way of taking care of emotional, physical and spiritual health.” At the same time, fitness trackers and increased access to food intolerance testing have allowed for a more personalised approach to diet and health. “A lot of people are tracking like crazy with their Fitbits and people are also looking more and more to tailor what they buy,” she said. “Gluten-free was the first big trend that happened that made consumers realise they could eat what was good for them, and not necessarily what was good for somebody else…Before, you could guess what was good for you, but now you can prove it, and you have more products that are tailored for your needs.” In addition, functional and fortified foods are back, according to Innova. “We went through eight or ten years of this very inherent nutritional approach and now we are asking consumers whether they agree with the science, and they are more willing to accept a less natural approach if it speaks to their dietary needs,” Williams said.
Connection and balance The report suggests that finding a balance between discovery and nostalgia, health and indulgence will be important for successful product development in 2021. However, transparency links all these trends together. “It is important to connect with your consumers in a really meaningful way. Whether it is good for immunity or safe to eat, those meaningful messages are really important right now,” she said. Rounding out the top ten, ‘The Age of the Influencer’ trend is related to this idea of meaningful connection, as consumers increasingly are interested in who is advising them on what to eat. “They are asking themselves, who is to be trusted right now?” Williams said. “They think about the ingredients and how it’s made, or it might be about communicating that something is a ton of fun – that’s OK too.”
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Emerging flavour trends from the food service industry interview with Lizzy Freier, Senior Research Manager, Menu, Technomic Some of the biggest flavour trends on the market have tended to originate from the food services industry. Emerging from smaller independent restaurants, these trends tend to make their way into the larger mainstream chain restaurants and retail stores. We caught up with Lizzy Freier, Senior Research Manager at Technomic, to find out more about the flavour trends and pairings we can expect to see coming through in the near future. Can you tell us a few things about how you collect your data and what data types you have? “I primarily focus on our menu data. Technomic has an enormous database of over 30,000 menus ranging from top chains down through high-volume and local independent restaurants. We collect menus via company websites, phone call/ fax or mystery shopping, and our experts review the data to make sure everything meets quality expectations.” Lizzy Freier Senior Research Manager Technomic
“Our database allows you to search in thousands of different ways to pinpoint the latest menu trends and see what’s on the horizon.”
“But beyond menu data, we also have industry, consumer, brand and other data research. And this data extends from the U.S. to other countries globally.”
What are some of the main trends you’ve seen within the food service industry? “Wow, so many to discuss! If we were to talk about some macro trends, I’d have to say plant-based, functional ingredients, menu cleansing, umami, global sauces and spices — all of these have tons of micro trends beneath the surface.”
How big is the plant-based trend across the food service industry? Can you give us some examples of exciting meat alternative dishes? “This is one of the fastest-growing trends right now, but it really flows in a lot of different directions. Plantbased food vs. plant-based beverage are two very different worlds. 3.5% of menus mention an item described as plant-based, though the growth has been extensive. For example, mentions of imitation meat burgers are up 57.7% year over year. Plant-based mentions in beverages are up 71.4% in the past year.” “Plant-based iterations of proteins have gone mainstream with plant-based beef, pork and chicken products, though on the horizon are plant-based bacon, seafood, eggs and more. Beyond proteins, plantbased carbs have also been popping up, like plant-based noodles and rice.” “And then on the beverage side, we’ve seen plant-based milks by way of almond, coconut, soy and oat milk going mainstream, while on the horizon are other nut or seed milk, such as sunflower seed, hemp seed or cashew nut milks, as well as fruit or vegetable milks beyond coconut.”
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What exciting flavours have you seen coming out recently? “From a mainstream perspective - meaning it’s popping up in leading chains - I’m excited to see things like turmeric and oat milk gain momentum. I think we’ll see more umami or bitter flavours start to gain ground in the independent restaurant space over the coming year, to take more hold in chains.”
What types of flavour combinations are currently trending and what flavour pairings do consumers find most appealing? “Almost two-fifths of consumers (37%) strongly agree that they want more restaurants to offer foods that feature a combination of flavours, according to Technomic’s 2019 Flavour Consumer Trend Report.” “Spicy flavour combinations are highly appealing, appearing in a variety of meal parts, from entrees to desserts, so multiple kinds of flavour combinations highlighting spiciness are pleasing. More specifically, half of consumers find spicy and smoky, spicy and savoury, and spicy and sweet combos appealing.” “While sweet flavour combinations are among the most appealing, some (sweet and sour; sweet and smoky) are decreasing in appeal, perhaps because they’re more traditional choices.”
How do you determine whether a flavour trend has staying power? “We look at the evolution of that flavour trend through a lifecycle. Typically, flavours start to emerge in small independent restaurants, then possibly trickle into emerging chains, and then into potentially larger mainstream chain restaurants and retailers.” “If a flavour trend were to just pop up suddenly in a mainstream chain, it likely isn’t one with much staying power.”
What are your predictions for the food service industry over the next 3-5 years? “Given the impact that COVID-19 has had, predicting what our world will look like in 3-5 years is tricky. I think in the short term, we’re going to see safer limited time offers in terms of supply chain and complexity. Menu cleansing will be a big part of that.” “That being said, I don’t think stunt LTOs and menu exploration are going away. People look to food and beverage as a form of safe exploration, but they’re certainly looking for comfort. I therefore think that we’ll see a sense of these opposing trends coming up together.”
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Mintel: Specialised nutrition in a post-Covid world interview with Rick Miller, Food and Drink Associate Director, Specialised Nutrition, Mintel Sales of specialised nutrition products are on the rise, and the trend looks set to continue as long as Covid-19 remains a health threat, according to market research organisation Mintel. Rick Miller, Food and Drink Associate Director, Specialised Nutrition at Mintel, says there has been financial growth and market growth not only in categories like immune health, but across all specialised nutrition sectors, including sports nutrition, weight management, foods for special medical purposes (FSMPs), functional ingredients, and early life. “All have seen positive growth, and we have seen a positive response across all major markets,” he said. “…Why? Fear is gripping the world. Right from the start of the crisis, the overall trend is that people are very fearful of becoming infected with Covid-19.” This has had a clear impact on traditional ingredients for immune support, such Rick Miller, Food and Drink Associate Director, Specialised Nutrition at Mintel
as vitamin C and zinc, with growing sales and new product launches, while other ingredients have aimed to capitalise on this area, even if their claims are sometimes “a bit of a stretch”, according to Miller.
“Mintel has been tracking consumer responses to the Covid-19 outbreak since January and across the world, approximately 50 per cent are worried about contracting Covid-19. That fear appears to be stronger the closer to the epicentre of the outbreak you get,” Miller said, specifying that it tends to track higher in Asia than in Canada, for example. “That is going to continue to drive the sector until we have a vaccine. At least until that point, we are going to see further growth within the sector.”
Prioritising nutrition However, the crisis also has sparked growth in less obviously Covid-related areas, such as sports nutrition and weight management. Miller says these segments are closely related in some ways, as consumers aim to stay in shape – or regain it after excessive comfort eating and drinking during lockdown. Despite the economic impact of the pandemic, these categories held up well during the 2008 recession and, today, people again appear to be prioritising health-related food and nutrition products. “That is a positive news story for brands that are operating in those sectors,” said Miller. “Consumers may be trending towards frugality when it comes to other areas of food and drink, but when they think about sports nutrition they continue to invest.” While Covid undoubtedly is playing a role in many consumers’ purchasing decisions, other drivers remain important.
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Sustainability, health and convenience “Consumers continue to be influenced by bigger macro trends such as the climate crisis and an everincreasing drive toward convenience,” Miller said, adding that ‘smart nutrition’ meal replacement beverages like Huel and Soylent fit well at the crossroads of specialised nutrition categories like weight management and sports nutrition, and fulfil these broader industry trends of sustainability and elevated convenience. “These products are very convenient and have an enviable sustainability profile. Obviously, they’re not suitable for everybody but certainly for many younger or time-pressed consumers, these foods are going to be very appealing. We have seen some of the brands operating in this space pushing their products as sustainable, convenient, good for you, good for the planet – and it also works with the ‘new normal’ Covid work environment. You can just have it at your desk.” He added that this “may be in direct contrast to the increase in cooking from home trend”, but Mintel’s research suggests that this might not be a trend with long-term staying power. For instance, during July of this year more than 30% of Japanese consumers said they were cooking more from home, but post-Covid, only six per cent said they intended to continue. “That shows us that some of these trends are transient,” said Miller. “We need to look at some of these macro trends that have been around for a very long time such as plant-based, convenience and sustainability. These are likely to continue in the longer term.”
Health concerns and vulnerability Interest also has increased in functional foods, particularly those intended to help with energy levels, sleep and mood, according to Mintel. It found that stress tops the list of health worries for many consumers at the moment, making room for ingredients like adaptogens and nootropics, which the market researcher expects to grow. In addition, Covid-19 has broadened the market for brands offering foods and supplements for special medical purposes. “What we have seen as a result of Covid is a demarcation between those who are mostly well and those who are vulnerable,” Miller said, specifying that this latter group generally refers to the elderly, those with chronic diseases like diabetes, and expectant mothers. “Supporting these vulnerable groups is a big opportunity for brands who are trying to get into the special medical nutrition space,” he said. The legacy of Covid-19 builds on existing awareness of a rapidly ageing population, and the challenges that brings in itself, such as age-related muscle loss and macular degeneration, for instance. “With an ageing society, nutrition is going to have a much greater role. We have become much better at extending life, but not in good quality health,” he said. “…The foods for special medical purposes sector need to adapt to the society that’s coming, and I think Covid has really put the accelerator on that process, making these products more accessible and more normalised.”
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What’s next for the sports nutrition market? interview with Mike Hughes, Head of Research and Insight, FMCG gurus Two core consumer groups are driving the growth of the sports nutrition market –active nutrition consumers and performance nutrition consumers. We caught up with Mike Hughes, Head of Research and Insight, FMCG Gurus, to discover who these consumers are and how they differ, as well as what are their motivations and need states are when selecting sports nutrition products. How do you characterise the difference between active nutrition and performance nutrition consumers? “Active Nutrition consumers are people who are taking a proactive and long-term approach to health and engage in some forms of physical activity on a weekly basis. However, they are not active gym goers who engage in strenuous exercise daily and do not engage in activities such as running marathons. Instead, these consumers are seeking out sports nutrition products for a quick and convenient nutritional boost as opposed to helping facilitate workout routines. In comparison, performance nutrition consumers are those who engage in strenuous workouts either in the gym or endurance events Mike Hughes, Head of Research and Insight FMCG Gurus
such as running. These consumers turn to products to help maximize physical performance and reduce the risk of injuries.”
What are some main similarities and differences between these consumers in terms of the type of products they purchase? “Active Nutrition consumers will tend to be claim-led when purchasing sports nutrition products. They are more likely to turn to products for general health and wellness claims, wanting reassurance about products being high in protein and low in sugar. However, these consumers will not be over-attentive to the quality, volume, or source of protein. Instead, general health claims are sufficient and the taste and texture of products are a greater issue as they want products that they deem to be hassle-free. Whilst taste and texture is also of high importance to Performance Nutrition consumers, they will be more attentive to issues such as source, volume, and quality of protein in products as they seek out products that help facilitate workout routines.”
What are some of the changes in consumer behaviours you’ve observed within these two groups? “In terms of both sets of consumers, there is a growing level of appeal towards plant-based protein products. When stating this, it is important to offer context and the reality is that whey protein products continue to be very popular options amongst consumers. However, the reason for the appeal of plantbased products is because irrespective of type of consumer, the number of people following plant-based diets is increasing. Moreover, consumers want products that they associate with being free-from ingredients deemed detrimental to health and claims around products being suitable for vegans gives products something of a clean label and purity positioning.”
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Have there been many shifts in consumer behaviour due to Covid-19? “In the short term, the sports nutrition market will have been impacted by the closure of gyms, lockdown restricting the extent that consumers can exercise and recessionary concerns resulting in consumers looking to reduce spend, especially if they were turning to sports nutrition snacks for general snacking purposes. However, any hits have been short term and the market is recovering as consumers take a more proactive approach to wellbeing and look to boost their physical health. Indeed, FMCG Gurus believes that as a result of COVID-19, there will be an increase in Active Nutrition consumers who are currently dissatisfied with their diets and lifestyles and want to make changes to minimize their vulnerability to disease and illness.”
How is the market for active and performance nutrition changing? “One key area in which the sports nutrition market will evolve for both types of consumers over the next couple of years, is the issue of cognitive health and mental wellbeing. Across the globe, a high proportion of consumers are not satisfied with their mental wellbeing, with issues such as stress and anxiety being common. This is something that will only continue to intensify in 2020 and beyond because of high levels of uncertainty brought about by COVID-19. Active Nutrition consumers are recognizing that issues such as fatigue and stress can impact on their health beyond influencing mood and can directly impact the immune system. Meanwhile Performance Nutrition consumers recognize that cognitive health and focus and concentration has a direct impact on performance levels when working out. For both sets of consumers, there will be increased focus on sports nutrition products that offer cognitive benefits over the next couple of years.”
Is the sport nutrition market opening to new groups of consumers like the seniors, wanting to remain active longer? “Seniors remain a massive market for the sports nutrition market – and a demographic that continues to be relatively untapped by the industry. One of the reasons for this is that the packaging design and positioning of sports nutrition products are often targeted at younger adults. However, across the globe, the proportion of senior consumers continues to rise. Moreover, consumers are adopting the notion of healthy ageing at a time when more emphasis is placed on older consumers being more vulnerable to disease and illness. At the same time, issues such as obesity tend to be more common amongst seniors whilst so does insufficient intake of protein. As such, there is considerable opportunity to grow the sports nutrition market over the next five years by targeting seniors.”
What are your predictions for the active and performance nutrition market over the next 3-5 years? “The Performance Nutrition market will continue to remain something of a niche and specialist market, with very few of the population classifying as genuine Performance Nutrition consumers. However, the Active Nutrition market is one that will continue to grow. This is because of factors such as changing meal-time habits, time-scarcity and stress having a major impact on consumers’ health and at the same time, these consumers taking a more proactive approach to wellbeing. As such, these consumers will make greater attempts to engage in physical activity but more noticeably, will look to make changes to their dietary habits such as substituting traditional snacking options for high protein/low sugar alternatives. If these products are satisfactory from a sensory perspective and consumers like the taste and texture of products, they will only continue to become more mainstream.”
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Fi Europe Innovation Awards 2020 Finalists and Winners Food Tech Innovation Award This awards an organization or company that has submitted an innovative technical processing/ manufacturing/packaging/waste reduction solution or service for food ingredients or finished products. Preference is given to entries introduced within the last 2 years.
NETZSCH Trockenmahltechnik GmbH Entry: NETZSCH Fine Impact Mill Condux® Compact Desciption: The ATEX-compliant Condux® Compact makes the installation of an efficient grinding plant considerably easier for a variety of different products: With this newly developed plant design explosion protection valves or explosion-suppression equipment, explosion-decoupling, ventilators and even dust filter systems are no longer necessary in a classical sense. NETZSCH has now revised this plant concept once again and improved it in decisive points: The footprint (space requirement) of the compact plant is 80% smaller than that of comparable standard grinding plants with the same throughput capacities. This also has an effect on the investment costs, which are about 30% lower.
Pharmactive Biotech Products Entry: AFF®ON Cool-Tech Description: AFF®ON Cool-Tech, it is a patented extraction process, that allows us to obtain the highest quality saffron extract, that is, to preserve and obtain a higher concentration of the bioactive compounds of saffron, such as safranal and crocins. Pharmactive reaps the benefits of an exclusive three-step, low-temperature production process that creates highly concentrated, potent affron with long-lasting actives stability – for up to 36 months. AFF®ON Cool-Tech is a unique patented and innovative process that allows the extraction of one of the purest extracts of saffron, affron®, with higher quality and with less energy use.
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Ingredient Innovation Award This awards an organization or company that has submitted the best ingredient or process in terms of sensory and physical properties or application costs. Preference is given to entries introduced within the last 2 years.
ADM Entry: ProFam® Pea: unlocking opportunities with pea protein. Description: Offering the cleanest-tasting pea protein in the industry and better functionality compared to major competitors, ADM’s ProFam® Pea offering is the result of decades of experience in delivering superior taste and sensory profiles to plantbased protein formulations. Bringing sustainable protein and a high PDCAAS score to a wider range of food and beverage applications than previously possible with competitive products, ProFam® Pea unlocks new possibilities for creating exciting new plant-protein products for a healthier, more sustainable future.
Biospringer Entry: Springer Proteissimo™ 101 Description: Biospringer announces the launch of Springer Proteissimo™ 101, a revolutionary solution for formulators who are searching for a versatile protein for their meat substitutes or dairy-free products.
Bunge Loders Croklaan Entry: Sweetolin Description: Consumers are looking for healthier and balanced choices, even within indulgence categories. Less sugar is top of mind. A key industry challenge has been to formulate products that offer the same taste and overall experience but without sugar. Sweetolin is an industry first, patent-pending breakthrough fat system that offers a great taste experience and enables up to 50% less sugar in the final confectionery. Also, Sweetolin maintains texture and taste performance without lingering off-taste.
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Ingredient Innovation Award - cont. Fonterra Cooperative Group/NZMP Entry: Softer Nutritional Bars with SureProtein™ SoftBar 1000 Milk Protein Isolate Description: SureProtein™ SoftBar 1000MP is an exceptionally soft milk protein isolate designed to contribute softness and shortness to high protein nutritional bars. Thanks to its superior texture stability and softness, it minimizes hardening and browning to extend bar shelf-life. SureProtein™ SoftBar 1000MP is very low in sugar, enabling formulation flexibility and bar premiumisation to meet the needs of today’s discerning and nutritionally savvy consumers who demand high protein and low sugar solutions with great taste and texture.
Polaris Entry: POLARIS INNOVATION: Plant based Omega-3, rich in EPA & DHA, opens new horizons! Description: Polaris brings now to all customers the possibility to use a vegan source of EPA and DHA, to innovate and to create new complex formulations When it comes to Omega-3s, microalgae is known to be a more sustainable, vegan friendly alternative to fishoils. For decades, the industry’s focus is to increase the content in EPA/DHA, which opened new horizons for product developments. Nevertheless, until today, these products could only be done with concentrated fishoils. To address this situation, Polaris is launching 2 new vegan and sustainable products.
Viking Malt Oy Entry: Sprau - the germinated faba bean Description: Faba beans demonstrate huge potential to help both agriculture and the food industry become more sustainable. They help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve biodiversity, revitalize soil, host pollinating insects and provide an excellent source of macro and micronutrients. However, their use is limited by the digestive discomfort they may cause as well as their beany flavor. With the germinated faba bean Sprau, this is no longer the case. During germination, the bean efficiently degrades FODMAPs and our unique treatment leaves the bean with a mild, cereal like flavor, making the beans easier to enjoy in the everyday diet.
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Sustainability Innovation Award This awards an organization or company for a measurable supply chain strategy that champions environmental, economic or socially sustainable practices in the F&B industry. Preference is given to entries introduced within the last 2 years.
Olam International Ltd Entry: AtSource - Cultivating sustainable change from the ground up Description: AtSource is a revolutionary sustainability insights platform developed by Olam to meet the multiple needs of manufacturing and retail customers wanting to buy sustainable products like coffee, cocoa, cashew, cotton and rice, and access reliable information about their third party supply chains.
Solarcool Technologies LLC Entry: Turning sun into Power of Refrigeration for post harvest loss prevention Description: Africa one of the few continents with long sunny days and plenty of sunshine. At the same time, hot weather and high solar intensity also leads to faster spoilage of our fruits, vegetables, flowers, dairy products. We turn what would have caused spoiling( sun) of these agro-products into a solution (refrigeration technology) for farmers in Africa hence reducing food wastage after harvest. â€ƒ
insights.figlobal.com Fi Global Insights 2021 Trend Guide | 15
Fi Global Startup Innovation Challenge 2020 Finalists and Winners
In partnership with
Most Innovative Food or Beverage Ingredient This category covers innovations related to food and beverage ingredients or additives from an animal / plant / alternative source.
Michroma Michroma is developing a biotech platform using CRISPR to unleash the potential of filamentous fungi and develop proprietary strains capable of producing high performance ingredients. Their first products are extremely pH and thermal stable food colourants, currently being prototyped.
Cultured Decadence Cultured Decadence is developing a system to create real crustacean products directly from the animals’ cells using cell-culture and tissue engineering, producing just the high-value portions of crab and lobsters (no shell, no organs, no waste).
Paragon Pure Paragon Pure’s CaptaClean™ encapsulation technology stabilises active ingredients via spray drying with a natural carrier wall material, resulting in the creation of genuinely natural powdered flavours, as well as colouring foodstuffs such as dried carrot and beet juice.
Most Innovative Processing Technology This category covers innovations related to food processing technologies that have the potential to positively impact the F&B industry.
Sufresca Sufresca is developing innovative edible coating formulations for postharvest extension of shelf-life and quality of fresh and minimally processed foods; particularly those that are notoriously challenging to coat.
Legendary Vish Legendary Vish is developing plant-based seafood with 3D Food Printing.
NOVAMEAT NOVAMEAT is the world’s first developer of plant-based micro extruded fibrous meat and is known for its plant-based beef and pork whole-muscle cuts.
Tebrito Tebrito is developing premium plug and play protein ingredients for the food industry from insects, and have managed to overcome the issues with powder browning.
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Most Innovative Service or Technology Supporting the F&B Industry
In partnership with
This category covers innovations that support improvements in ingredients sourcing and production, food safety, traceability, transparency, or supply chain management.
Enzymit Enzymit is developing ground-breaking computational protein design algorithms that will allow them to build tailor-made enzymes for any reaction on demand, as well as dramatically improve existing enzymes on multiple parameters in extremely short time frames.
FlavorWiki FlavorWiki has developed a unique, patent pending, digital sensory technology to evaluate flavour, texture, aroma and mouthfeel simultaneously, using regular consumers. This platform can also help B2B ingredient companies evaluate prototypes and get feedback from their customers with detailed product data in real time.
Innoscentia Innoscentia is developing a dynamic expiration label based on an ink which reacts to volatile organic gases that are released as food decays. Their sensors come as analogue and digital labels that can be read visually with the naked eye, or with a smartphone or in a blockchain.
Kiinns Kiinns is developing a unique patent-pending technology that eliminates the need to clean food processing equipment after use in food production lines.
Spoontainable Spoontainable is developing a sustainable plastic alternative from cocoa bean and oat husk residues. Their innovative processing method produces microscopic fibres that retain all essential nutrients, fibre and natural flavours of the husks.
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Leveraging the power of ‘fungal factories’ interview with Ricky Cassini, CEO and Co-founder, Michroma Argentinian biotech startup Michroma is using fungi to produce label-friendly and sustainable food colours that do not cost the earth. The Argentinian startup has developed a biotech platform to manufacture next-generation natural ingredients in a sustainable, cost-effective, and scalable way. Michroma’s technology works by using specific fungi as ‘biofactories’. It engineers the fungi’s organism, instructing it to create proprietary and high-performing colourful strains, which it then ferments in scalable bioreactors. Michroma’s CEO and co-founder Ricky Cassini says: “Our mission is to replace all petroleum-based ingredients. Food dyes are everywhere, from junk food to healthy food. Companies are using them to make their products more appealing to our eyes, make them look more nutritious and healthier and thus incentivise us to buy them.” Ricky Cassini, CEO and Co-founder, Michroma
“The problem is most of these dyes are petroleum-based and have been related to many health concerns such as allergies, ADHD [attention deficit hyperactivity
disorder], hyperactivity in kids and cancer. Consumers demand for natural ingredients is booming and companies are worried about the ingredients they use.” “We currently have natural colorants from agriculture, but they can lead to a fake perception of sustainability because [of] the extremely high use of resources – water, land, and pesticides. They are much more expensive, having a long and difficult to control supply chain.” The result is a food-grade vibrant colour that can be used in the food, beverages, confectionery, cosmetic and pharmaceutical applications. Its fungi-based colours are also more pH- and heat-stable than the natural options currently on the market and are suitable for vegans. “This process is completely sustainable, using much less resources like water and land, we shorten the supply chain also reducing carbon emissions,” says Cassini.
The full spectrum of colours The company’s flagship ingredient will be a red dye that can replace cochineal red, which is produced from cochineal insects. It then aims to scale up production to compete with more expensive plant-based reds, commonly made from beetroot, before targeting petroleum-based colourants. “Currently, we can also produce orange and yellow, all three combined are 90% of the food dye industry. Nevertheless, we are going to leverage the power of our fungal factories to produce a full spectrum of colours, including blue and green, and after this extend our platform to other ingredients, to accomplish our mission of replacing all petroleum-based ingredients.”
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The company was founded when entrepreneur Ricky Cassini met Mauricio Braia at an event organised by the Austral University on how to set up a scientific startup. Since then, the startup has attracted attention from some of the most important biotechnology investment funds in the world. It was one of 20 companies selected out of 500 applicants to take part in an accelerator programme organised by Buenos Aires-based GridX. The GridX programme involved a networking trip to Silicon Valley in the US where Cassini and Braia connected with IndieBio, the world’s largest biotechnology accelerator, which chose to accelerate Michroma.
Fermentation: ‘The future of nutrition’ Cassini is confident that fermentation platforms will play a pivotal role in future food innovation. “Fermentation is going to be the future of nutrition. Petroleum-based ingredients are going to be limited by governments and consumers will reject them. Consumers continue to shift focus to climate, health, and wellness. Fungi are going to take an extremely relevant role as biofactories and in the alternative-meat space.” According to Cassini, Michroma’s portfolio will be particularly disruptive not only because of the sustainable production method but because the colours are more functional than current offerings. “We are creating the future of ingredients production, not only by having a completely new source of ingredients but also by having better performing ingredients.”
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An invisible solution to the glaring food waste problem Interview with Efrat Ferri, CEO, Sufresca Coating fresh fruit and vegetables in a patent-protected edible, invisible film can help reduce food loss and waste from farm to fork, says Israeli startup, Sufresca. Sufresca has created ‘breathable’ emulsion-type edible coatings that are tailored to the specific properties of different fresh fruits and vegetables varieties. The coatings are effective at ambient temperature and under other storage conditions, such as moderate relative humidity. The result, it says, is natural-looking produce that stays fresher for longer and eliminates the need for plastic packaging.
Fighting carbon footprint One-third of all food that is produced globally is either lost or wasted each year, equivalent to around 1.3 billion tons of food, according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Efrat Ferri, CEO, Sufresca
Efrat Ferri, CEO of Sufresca, says the figures for fresh fruit and vegetables are even higher.
“Between 38 and 55% of fresh fruit and vegetables are lost or wasted globally, resulting in a stupendous carbon footprint – eight percent of global emission – and water footprint,” she says. “This has a devastating impact on food security and hampers the productivity of supply chains around the globe at a financial cost to all actors.” Developed by researchers at the faculty of agriculture, food and environment of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the thin coating is transparent, odourless, and tasteless, and went undetected in sensory evaluations conducted by the startup. So far, Sufresca has developed three formulation types, covering many varieties of fruit and vegetables. Its edible coatings for whole produce, such as tomato, cucumber, pepper, mango and avocado, prolong shelf life by several weeks, reducing weight loss over time and maintaining colour and firmness. Its edible film-type coatings are suitable for bulbs such as onion and garlic and offer a dual function, maintaining quality over months of storage and providing protection against pests. Finally, its selective coating for minimally processed fruits, such as pomegranate arils (the juicy, fleshy layer around each inner seed) prevent fluids from escaping through the surface.
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According to the company, the coatings can be applied to produce using a simple technique that can be easily incorporated into existing production lines while the final formulation is composed of “well-established natural ingredients” that are recognised as safe for food industry use and are compliant with leading regulatory requirements, such as those set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the US and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in Europe.
Farm-to-fork food waste hotspots “Even though the relation between shelf life and food loss and waste is not straightforward, knowing where and how detrimental changes occur in the food supply chain is important to improve best post-harvest approaches,” says Ferri. Food loss may occur if cold-chain storage facilities are not available while post-harvest waste can occur because growers sometimes overproduce to account for anticipated losses. Retailers may have strict appearance criteria, discarding any produce that does not meet their size or colour requirements. Food waste can also continue in the home if consumers buy more than they can eat or do not store produce correctly, leading it to spoil early. “The reduction of food loss and waste in hotspots from farm to fork means a higher return for the same input and reducing costs on waste management. Sufresca also relieves the constraints of other preservation methods, such as cold-chain and retail packaging.” “Our mission is to facilitate better global horticulture practices, where our cost-effective and eco-friendly edible coatings are available for all perishables. Considering the commodity and its coating as a whole is key to optimising sustainability and the productivity of supply chains around the world.” The startup, which has several patents protecting its intellectual property, could have an even greater impact on the organic produce sector, where fruit and vegetables are particularly susceptible to postharvest degradation, according to its CEO.
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Engineering novel enzymes is key to creating healthier food interview with Gideon Lapidoth, CEO and CTO, Enzymit Improving enzymes – and creating new ones that don’t exist in nature – is the cleanest and most efficient way to improve the food we eat, according biotech firm Enzymit. The Israeli company develops computational protein-design algorithms that it uses to build tailor-made enzymes. Using these enzymes as biocatalysts for other chemical reactions, Enzymit can help suppliers scale up production of high-value molecules that have supply chain issues. Producing the best-tasting stevia molecules that exist in tiny quantities in the natural stevia leaf is one example. Co-founded just one year ago by Gideon Lapidoth, its CEO and CTO, and Dror Baran, head of R&D, the startup completed pre-seed funding in May this year, and is already working with a number of companies, including an Israeli cellcultured meat company and an international flavour and fragrance house. Gideon Lapidoth, CEO and CTO, Enzymit
According to Lapidoth, enzymes bring speed and precision to new product development. While the typical R&D process can span months and even years, Enzymit says it can reduce this to a matter of months. The CEO said traditional
chemistry is inefficient because the process may not create enough of the desired target molecule and can also produce off-products that are both harmful to the environment and expensive to remove. Using enzymes allows for a cleaner, cheaper, and more exact manufacturing process, he said. “Enzymes are biomolecules that make other molecules – like tiny machines that process other materials – and they allow you to be super precise,” he told Fi Global Insights. “It’s great in theory but the problem is that currently most enzymes we use are derived from nature and you don’t necessarily find the kind of enzymes you need to make the kind of molecules you want. That’s where we come in; we have the technology to create enzymes you don’t find in nature.” In addition to creating new-to-nature enzymes, the startup uses its engineering software to make small tweaks to existing enzymes to make them more optimal. It can improve thermal-stability, expression, specificity, or activity, for instance.
‘Revolutionising the industry’ Enzymit first designs its desired molecule virtually and then tests it in traditional biological experiments. In order to ‘bring to life’ its computer-generated design, it injects a natural organism such as bacteria or yeast with DNA, ‘hijacking’ its manufacturing facility and instructing the organism to produce the desired enzyme. “The computer outputs a design, we translate that design into a DNA code and then feed that DNA code into bacteria,” Lapidoth explained. “Those last two steps might sound very sci-fi, but they are actually the more trivial ones. The real challenge is the design problem, and that’s what we are trying to solve. We want to make it a very automated and simple process, turning enzymes into a commodity and not a research challenge.”
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“These tweaks […] are very hard to do using traditional methods. This new wave of technology where we can do it computationally is really revolutionising the industry,” he added.
Applications Novel enzymes offer applications in a number of industries but the food and beverage sector currently has “the largest niche”, Lapidoth said. Enzymit has already completed a number of projects with manufacturers. One ongoing internal project involves creating enzymes to scale-up the production of lowcalorie rare sugars, such as allulose and tagatose, and the sweeteners, stevia and monk fruit. It also worked with a local cell-cultured meat company, helping its R&D team develop the protein that instructs the meat cells to grow – an essential step to scaling up production and reducing the currently prohibitively high costs. “When you do the math and look at the economics of producing meat using their fermentation method versus what it costs to grow meat from a cow, there is no comparison. It makes more sense to go in that direction rather than traditional agriculture,” Lapidoth said. “[Scaling up] is probably the biggest challenge for lab-grown meat but it’s a solvable challenge using our tools and hopefully, a year from now from this company or others will have lab-grown meat on shelves.”
Consumer perception According to Enzymit, the final product does not differ from the natural, target molecule. “[Our] product molecule, say stevia, is completely identical to the molecule derived from nature. I know there are concerns about genetically modified organisms (GMO) but enzymes are usually used as processing aids, so they are not consumed. It’s not like GMO for plants because it doesn’t have any effect on the natural qualities of the product,” said the CEO. Enzymit is aware that consumers may not perceive its process, or that of other biotech companies, as being natural – particularly when developing enzymes that do not exist in nature. However, Lapidoth does not see this as a barrier to manufacturers’ uptake because of the advantages its process offers, particularly in terms of resource-efficiency. “The result of our manufacturing process is a healthier product. One of the problems with traditional chemistry is the need to use very harsh chemicals or detergents that then find their way into our drinking water and environment. Replacing those with enzymes has a long-term collateral effect [and] I hope that people understand and accept that. “Regardless of Enzymit’s role in all this, I think this is the right way to go,” he added. “Fermentation is a way of producing something using yeast or bacteria and it can produce lots of valuable nutrients in a much more cost-efficient but also energyefficient way.”
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Innovation Tours The future of clean label The various sanitary crises and the demonization by the media of a controversial ingredient or additive have accentuated the crisis of consumer confidence toward the food industry, leading to the paradox that, while food has never been as safe as it is today, consumers have never been as suspicious toward the products they buy. But the challenge of Clean Label goes far beyond the removal of additives from the list of ingredients. It’s about sincerity, transparency, products, made with familiar ingredients, by real people in a sustainable way. This Innovation Tour features products by the following Fi Europe CONNECT 2020 exhibitors: • Cp Kelco • Ingredia • HI-Food • Amerex • Inner Mongolia • Metarom • Kemin • Aloja Starkelsen • Gold Coast • Herba Ingredients
Health and well-being exacerbated by the Pandemic The Covid-19 has highlighted human’s fragility. Those most affected are those in poorer health. Therefore, it is important to be and to stay healthy, which could be the best way to fight the virus effectively. Immunity-boosters, co-morbidity factor-fighters, …consumers are refocusing on products that could protect themselves from the virus. This Innovation Tour features products by the following Fi Europe CONNECT 2020 exhibitors: • Kanematsu Okara • Metarom • Borges • HI-Food • Zukan • Valio • Ingredia • Gelita • Rousselot • Komeko • Lactalis • Dr Paul Lohmann • Gnosis • Nexira • Marigot • Omya
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Fighting Covid-19 blues with pleasure & indulgence The health crisis imposed a lockdown, followed by drastic restrictions, which generated frustration: goodbye to the little coffee at the counter or the fish and chips after the movie. The covid-19 put all the pleasures back in the cupboards. In order not to risk REAL depression, consumers are craving for indulgent snacks and new sensory experiences. This Innovation Tour features products by the following Fi Europe CONNECT 2020 exhibitors: • Chocolat Frey • Sethness Roquette • Brace • Purac • Paradise fruit • Doehler • Nexira • Rousselot
Veganomics The plant-based trend is nothing new, but the rise of the number of Climaterians put the emphasis on the emergency to save the planet and anyone living on it. In that context, no wonder why, according to BIS Research, the market of plant-based products is expecting to reach $480.43 Bn in 2024 with a CAGR of >13.82% between 2019 & 2024. This Innovation Tour features products by the following Fi Europe CONNECT 2020 exhibitors: • Herba ingredients • DO-IT • Kanematsu • Netzsch • Newgen • Sprau ingredients • Microganic • Sethness Roquette
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EUROPEAN SLEEP & SLEEP COGNITIVE EUROPEAN & COGNITIVE HEALTH TRENDS 2020 HEALTH TRENDS 2020
Consumer Experts, Insight Driven
Consumer Experts, Insight Driven
The following are based on our COVID-19 survey series (April-July 2020) and Stress and Sleep Management survey (2019 and 2020)
The following are based on our COVID-19 survey series (April-July 2020) and
Sleep health and mental wellbeing is deteriorating amongst consumers, driven by high levels of
uncertainty. the same time, consumers recognize that mental issues are something Stress and Sleep At Management survey (2019 and health 2020) that can directly impact the immune system.
Sleep health and mental wellbeing is deteriorating amongst consumers, driven by high levels of Four in Ten 59% European consumers say Of European consumers uncertainty. At the same time, consumers recognize that mental health issues are something that they have become more say that COVID-19 has conscious about their mental
impacted their sleep
that can directly system. wellbeing as a result ofimpact COVID-19 the immunehealth
Four in Ten
Proportion of European consumers who say that their sleep health has worsened in the last two years
34% Of European consumers say that COVID-19 has impacted their sleep 45% health
uropean consumers say hat they have become more onscious about their mental0 2020 wellbeing as a result of COVID-19 10
Proportion of European consumers who say that their sleep health has worsened in the last two years
Of European consumers say that they plan to improve their mental/ cognitive health over the next twelve months
39% Of European consumers say that they find it difficult to get to sleep once they get into bed...
...Whilst 80% are awoken at least once in the average night
Consumers will want products that aid relaxation and encourage them to
switch off and get a good night sleep. At the same time, it is crucial that such products are deemed to be 100% natural and free from ingredients
that could impact on health in the long-term.
50% Of European consumers say 26 | More insights on Fi Global insights that they plan to improve their mental/
Of Europeans say that they have turned to food products to help improve their sleep patterns.
Of Europeans associate lavender with helping improve their sleep patterns
Of European consumers say that they find it difficult to get to sleep once they get into bed...
EUROPEAN SLEEP & COGNITIVE EUROPEAN IMMUNITY TRENDS IN 2020 & BEYOND HEALTH TRENDS 2020
Consumer Experts, Insight Driven
Consumer Experts, Insight Driven
The following are based on our Immunity survey series 2019 and 2020 and COVID-19 survey series (April-July 2020)
The following are based on our COVID-19 survey series (April-July 2020) and
Concerns over physical and cognitive health is something that will directly shape eating and
drinking habits over the next twelve survey months. Consumers seek2020) out food and drink products Stress and Sleep Management (2019 will and that offer health benefits beyond basic nutrition, as they look to maximize wellness and minimize vulnerability to disease and illness.
Sleep health and mental wellbeing is deteriorating amongst consumers, driven by high levels of Six in Ten
uncertainty. At the same time, consumers recognize that mental health issues are something European consumers say that COVID-19 has made them more that can directly impact the immune system. conscious about their immune health
Four in Ten
Proportion of consumers who are satisfied with their immune health 60
uropean consumers say hat they have become more onscious about their mental wellbeing as a result of COVID-19
Proportion of consumers who say that they have made changes to improve their immune health
Of European consumers 70 47% 56% has 60 say that COVID-19 impacted 50their sleep 40 health
50 40 30
Proportion of0 European consumers who say0 that 2019 2020 2019 their sleep health has worsened in the last two years
76% of European consumers associate a poor immune system with being easily susceptible to long-term health problems
of consumers who are looking to address their immune health are trying to improve this by making changes to their diets
Consumers will want products that they deem functional and effective, with ingredients and claims having an increasing influence on purchasing choice.
20 40 with having a negative impact30 on physical health and mental wellbeing.
At the same time, consumers will continue to avoid ingredients they associate
Which ingredients do European consumers associate with boosting the immune system?
Of European consumers say that they have sought out food and drink products to boost their immune health as a result of COVID-19
Of European consumers say that they plan to improve their mental/
Vitamin C Omega 3
80% Of European consumers say 40 60 80 100 that they find it difficult to get to sleep once they get into bed... Fi Global Insights 2021 Trend Guide |
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