DSM shakes up still drinks in Mexico with sorbate, benzoate replacer

By Ben BOUCKLEY contact

- Last updated on GMT

DSM shakes up still drinks in Mexico with sorbate, benzoate replacer

Related tags: Shelf life, Yeast

DSM Food Specialties has launched an all-natural preservation system for still beverages in Mexico and has high global hopes for an ingredient that significantly improves both shelf life and taste.

DelvoCid+ can also be used in dairy or meat applications and tackles mold and yeast, but Gabriela Basurto, DSM’s area manager for food protection, tells BeverageDaily.com that the firm sees the most potential for the natamycin (E235, a natural antifungal) based ingredient within the Mexican drinks space.

Basurto says the ingredients giant partnered with a new distributor in Mexico this March, Gapelli Ingredients.

Gapelli/DSM brought DelvoCid+ to market with a local producer of pasteurized RTD tea, where the brand in question sought 20 weeks shelf life, and previously had microbiological issues due to use of real tea extracts.

Using only 5ppm of DelvoCid+ in the formulation meant the brand achieved a much longer shelf life than with artificial ingredients such as sorbates and benzoates, Basurto said (DSM claims DelvoCid+ can achieve up to 12 months subject to the application) and has a clean taste that replaces their bitter ‘metallic’ aftertaste.

Customer seeks 20-week shelf life

One issue is bacteria – since DelvoCid+ only tackles mold and yeast – so in this instance the customer is using it alongside benzoate and sorbate, which are still used in very small quantities to cut out the aftertaste.

“The customer is looking for 20 weeks shelf life, but I started selling them the product only five weeks ago, so they are conducting trials now. After five weeks in the market there are no problems, whereas in the past by the third week they had problems,” ​Basurto said.

DelvoCid+ costs around $50/kg but Basurto says a low dose of 3ppm replaces 500ppm of sorbates and benzoates of around $6/kg, which means the ingredient is cost competitive.

She adds that boosting shelf life extends logistical opportunities (long distance shipment, less frequent supplies, etc.), while DelvoCid+ can be listed on product labelling as an ‘all natural preservation system’, pimaricin or natamycin, where sodium and benzoate are non-natural.

Expecting US and EU approval

Using the analogy of more expensive natural flavors or colors, Basurto says DSM research shows that, from Poland and Nigeria to China, Brazil – consumers increasingly favor ‘fresh and natural’ products as a starting point for differentiation, rather than a trend.

“Customers are looking for natural flavors, natural colors, so why not natural preservation systems?”​ she asks.

Talking about why DSM chose to launch DelvoCid+ in Mexico, Basurto says that such launches depend on local regulations (the firm expects FDA approval in 2014, and is also aiming for EU approval) and the ability to secure a regional partner, but adds that ingredient launches will increasingly occur in ‘emerging’ markets.

“Big companies such as PepsiCo, Danone, etc. can take a long time to select new ingredients, because they need to validate them all internally,”​ Basurto says.

She explains that it can be trickier for large players to change an established product or adhere to local regulations, while small customers only really need to solve technical issues, which shortens launch times.

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