FI Asia 2019

Clear protein beverage: Friesland Campina targets sports and active lifestyle nutrition with new launch

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

Friesland Campina aims to target the sports nutrition and active nutrition market with its whey protein isolate powder that could be added into beverages.  ©Getty Images
Friesland Campina aims to target the sports nutrition and active nutrition market with its whey protein isolate powder that could be added into beverages. ©Getty Images

Related tags Protein Beverages Sports nutrition

Friesland Campina has entered the clear protein beverage market with a new ingredient launch.

The new ingredient – a whey protein isolate powder – was showcased at the Food Ingredients Asia held in Bangkok recently.

The protein powder, when dissolved, produces a clear solution and a clean neutral taste, according to the firm.

The firm has worked around the texture and taste by adjusting the pH levels and amounts of fats in the whey protein.

“We have invested in a new production facility in the Netherlands for our whey protein isolate business, and the goal was to be able to come out with a product with as low level of fat as possible.

“Because the fat is what which contributes to the turbidity of the solution and together with that, we managed to come out with a product with a neutral flavour as well. In addition to clarity, it also has a clean taste," ​Kyle Brookmeyer, technical sales manager for adult nutrition told NutraIngredients-Asia.

“Typically, the lower the pH, the clearer the solution is, however, the taste also become much more sour and astringent.

“But due to the fact that we have such as a low level of fat in our product, we can go to a higher pH in the application and so, we still can have a very good clarity and good taste profile.

“We weren’t the first to market the clear protein beverage, but we wanted to make sure that we are one of the best and so we took the time to make sure we can do it right,​he added. 

The firm spent about 1.5 years to develop the product, according to Vicky Davies, marketing director of performance nutrition and active nutrition.

With it, the firm plans to target the active lifestyle and sports nutrition consumer segments.

"It has 8% of protein in it, so for example, in a 500ml of water, you can have 20g of protein. This product could be part of an active lifestyle, or could be taken as a sports drink.

“Elite sporting is a smaller segment of the sports nutrition market, which is growing 10% to 15% per year, and most of the growth is coming from the active lifestyle, which is looking for healthier snacks and healthier alternative to fizzy drink which has a good taste and nutrition quality,"​ Davies said.  

The firm has produced three prototypes coming in three different flavours with the new ingredient, namely pomegranate, lime, and cucumber.

Moving forward, Davies said the firm would conduct local studies to find out the local taste preference of different regions for new flavour applications.

New BU

The firm has also formed a new business unit – Friesland Campina Ingredients – which comprises of four segments.

They are early life nutrition, adult nutrition, food and beverages, and animal nutrition.

The early life nutrition portfolio will focus on breast milk substitutes and organic raw ingredients.

Whereas for adult nutrition, the focus will be on sports nutrition, active nutrition, and medical nutrition.

“I think in Asia, adult nutrition is especially relevant due to ageing population. You also see interest from different companies growing in that area and we are trying to target these companies covering different formats.

“The changing face of food and beverages, especially in Asia, called for a structure that optimises both our product offering and our customer-centricity,”​ Willem Hoogwater, director at  Friesland Campina Ingredients APAC said.

The firm’s regional headquarters will remain in Singapore.  

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