Synergy Flavors Inc. (Wauconda, IL) recently announced the launch of its Dairy by Nature portfolio of flavor solutions, which the firm showcased at this year’s SupplySide West in Las Vegas, NV. Known for its extracts and essences, this is the first dairy platform to be launched by Synergy, leveraging the dairy expertise of its parent company Carberry to modify the taste and texture of dairy and plant-based dairy applications.
When it comes to plant-based dairy alternatives, the goal of Dairy by Nature is to provide an authentic dairy profile, while still giving consumers a vegan product. “Our flavors work two-fold,” explained Heidi Liu, product manager, dairy taste, to Nutritional Outlook. “One is to mask the off notes and after taste, whatever is in that base, and the second is to enhance the overall taste by providing the mouthfeel, which is perceived as an indulgence as well as a flavor. It’s very subtle. Our goal is to achieve a natural tasting flavor that’s not offensive, that doesn’t taste artificial.”
For dairy-based ingredients such as whey protein isolate, Dairy by Nature aims to rebuild the indulgent, lingering creaminess of traditional dairy. Here, Synergy is able to really utilize its dairy heritage, using fermentation to concentrate flavors from real dairy ingredients. “What the flavor does to the base is provide a mouth feel, perception of indulgence, masking of astringency that is typical in a whey protein isolate base, and at the same time it has natural dairy flavor notes in it,” explained Liu, describing a beverages sample.
The Dairy by Nature portfolio also works with food such as bakery, confections, and savory applications. “In bakery, it can be used to reduce butter or to replace butter to give that creaminess, so if people are looking for an authentic Irish butter profile, we have that flavor profile to give that authentic flavor and mouth feel,” said Liu. “[Dairy by Nature] could be used to replace butter, replace fat, it works very well in fat reduction, sugar reduction applications as well, because often times when fats or sugars are taken away from a formulation, a lot of things change. It’s quite complex how fat and sugar work in applications. It’s not just the calories that change, the texture will change.”
The new flavor portfolio is a big opportunity for Synergy, whose resources allow the company to deliver on an important consumer demand: authentic flavor. Especially in plant-based products, as they reach a broader audience, the taste and texture of traditional dairy often has an edge for those who grew up on it. “With our [dairy] heritage, our knowledge, and expertise, we deserve this space to play and be successful,” reasoned Liu.