Neapolitan Pizza with Traditional Specialty Guaranteed

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pizza_napolitana

Neapolitan Pizza

The Neapolitan Pizza has obtained the certificate of Traditional Specialty Guaranteed (TSG), which it was asked for nearly two years.

This pizza has specific characteristics that make it different. To talk about a Neapolitan Pizza, it is necessary to satisfy the following requirements:

– Pizza dough reposed at least six hours

– Amount of mass between 180 to 250 grams

– Thickness of 0.4 cm

– Edge of no more than 2 cm

– Diameter of 35 cm

Its preparation is bathed with tomato paste, from the center of the mass extending to the outside, is watered with a trickle of olive oil, slices of buffalo mozzarella Campana DOP and basil and ultimately must be cooked in a wood oven at about 485ºC.

The TSG certificate makes no reference to origin; the aim is to highlight a traditional composition of the product or a production method.

In Spain, Jamón Serrano, Panellets, Oil cake and Milk Farm have this TSG Certificate.

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Food manufacturers ‘quietly reduce salt levels’

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Food manufacturers are taking a different approach to making their products healthier and marketing them to consumers, reports the Wall Street Journal.

salRather than producing specialist products which are advertised as having low sodium content, companies are quietly reducing the levels of salt in their flagship brands. Health organisations in the US and Europe want to reduce people salt intake by at least 20 per cent by 2014.

Douglas Balentine, Unilever NV’s North American director of nutrition and health, told the newspaper that by gradually reducing the levels of salt in their products without telling the consumer, which lets them get used to the new taste over time, they avoid the mindset that lower sodium varieties taste worse.

The Campbell Soup Company recently announced that it would be reducing the levels of salt in its SpaghettiO’s products to conform to US government guidelines.

Cereal manufacturers General Mills and Nestle committed to cutting down sodium levels in their ranges of products aimed at children to single digit amounts and Kellogg’s and Sara Lee have both made similar pledges.

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Kraft, Cadbury’s defence is ‘underwhelming’

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cadburyActivity is heating up around the British confectionary brand Cadbury after the publication of a defence document on January 12th stating that Kraft’s takeover offer was “even more unattractive”.

Reports have emerged through the Reuters news agency that sources close to the Italian company Ferrero and the US food manufacturer Hershey have ruled out either company putting in a rival bid.

This leaves Kraft’s bid, which was updated last week, the only offer on Cadbury’s table. The board of Cadbury responded to the offer when it published its end of year results stating that it was “even more unattractive” than when it was originally made and urging shareholders to reject the bid.

kraftKraft has hit back at the statements calling Cadbury’s defence “underwhelming”.

It said: “They have said very little that is new and have ducked the issue of their profitability in 2010. We continue to believe that the certainty and upside potential provided by our offer remains the best option for Cadbury’s shareholders.”

Bloomberg has also reported that Cadbury boss Todd Stitzer believes it is important to the brands future to remain whole, rather than being broken up by an acquisition, if it wants to continue to compete in the global market place.

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Nestle has launched a new research and development centre

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nestle-logoNestle’s new center, R+D Santiago, will lead the research and development worldwide in biscuits and cereals snacks, and will focus on innovation and product renewal. This will bring together specialists from different areas as nutrition, technology, product development and quality control.

The center will develop new technologies that will help further reduce levels of sugar and fat so that cookies are lighter, without losing flavor or consistency. In addition, the R & D Santiago center will develop biscuits with bioactive ingredients to improve digestive health, and fortified products to supply micronutrient deficiencies in countries where it is required, adapting to local tastes and needs.

Paul Bulcke, CEO of Nestle, said that the center “will offer to our consumers in Latin America and elsewhere, tasty, healthy and nutritious cookies. R & D Santiago will benefit from the synergies between research and development and production of biscuits, to be located in the industrial complex of Nestlé in Maipú, which employs more than one thousand two hundred people.

The new center will work closely with the global network of R & D of Nestlé, which has 28 Research, Development and Technology Centers and about five thousand workers. It will participate in local government initiatives, and develop collaborative partnerships with universities such as Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and Universidad de Chile.

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Nestle acquires assets of Kraft Foods in the U.S. and Canada

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nestle_logoNestle announced the acquisition of three thousand 700 millions of Dollars from the U.S. sector activities of Kraft Foods in the U.S. and Canada.

So far, Nestle held a position of second order in the frozen pizza industry in the United States. With this operation, the group expanded its presence in this market, the largest in the world with approximately 37 billion Dollars in annual sales, according to a statement.

Last year, Kraft Foods had a turnover estimated at 2100 million Dollars in this sector, said Nestle. “The frozen pizza activity strengthens significantly the frozen segment of Nestle in America”, estimated the general manager of the food world leader, Paul Bulcke.

Parallel to the operation released, Nestle also said had no part in a public bid for the British candy maker Cadbury, coveted by Kraft Foods, which has decided to redouble his bet. Indeed, the U.S. food giant announced that will devote the net proceeds of sales of its business to Nestlé from its pizza’s activity in NorthAmerica to finance a cash bid for Cadbury, which extended until 2 February.

The current offer, which Cadbury has already rejected, is made of a mixture of cash and shares “300 pence and 0,2589 Kraft’s shares, i.e. about 740 pence per Cadbury’s share and values the British group in a little over 11 billion Euros (15900 million Dollars).

In a statement to the London Stock Exchange after the announcement of the merger with Nestlé, the U.S. giant point out that it is going to spend “an amount equivalent to the entire net proceeds of this sale to finance a partial cash alternative of its bid for Cadbury’s.

The U.S. group will use the proceeds from the sale to Nestlé to offer 60 pence more in cash instead of shares.

Kraft pointed out that will give all the details on January 19, which is the latest day for the possible increase of its offer, according to the current timetable for mergers in the UK.

The initiative is “the desire expressed by some shareholders of Cadbury to see a larger share of the cash offer and because shareholders of Kraft Foods expressed the hope that this saves more on the use of shares Kraft Foods (nowadays) devalued”.

Kraft Foods “continues to estimate that the stock price is depressed as a result of a number of short-term factors that will disappear when the uncertainties surrounding the supply of Cadbury will be eliminated”.

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Stabilizers

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These additives provide the specific density and texture in milkshakes, ice creams or sauces.

qumica1i-300x200Food coloring, preservatives or flavorings are some of the additives that are used more in nourishing industry in order to heighten particular qualities (color or flavor) or to prolong the life utility. But there is a seasoning more: stabilizers charged to give and to maintain one determined texture in food like the milkshakes, ice creams or sauces. The essence of this additive resides in its capacity to mix ingredients that would not do it of natural form, like fat and water. Thickeners or gelling are member of the most used stabilizers. Like all additives, before being approved, they are put under rigorous controls that credit their safety.

The paper of additives in feeding is very varied and, based on this activity; they are grouped in different categories. Food colorings “recover” the color of food and they make them more tempting at sight; flavor enhancers have the mission to fortify the taste; sweeteners as aspartame are used to sweeten foods with a contained minor caloric; and preservatives extend the life utility in optimal conditions. Others as the stabilizers allow mixtures of ingredients that in natural conditions are impossible, like the water and the oil. Among them, they emphasize gelling that are added to food like ice creams to give gelatinous consistency, and thickeners, that contribute greater viscosity.

Texture without cracks

Foods have many and varied consistencies. There are not two stabilizers, thickeners or gelling additives equal; one will be more effective for a particular use that another one. The phosphates conserve the natural juice, mainly in meat products, and they preserve them of the humidity during the cooked process. Stabilizers have the ability to act of reciprocal form with other components of foods: Carragenate, extracted of red marine seaweed, react with proteins of milk, an aspect that favors the formation of a smooth gel that avoids particles of separated cacao in hot chocolate.

With stabilizers ingredients in certain mixtures are not disaggregated

helados_de_Jessica_MerzFoods like creams, sauces, shakes or frozen owe their uniform consistency and texture to additive action like agar-agar, pectin, guar gum or starches. Thickeners have the capacity, as carbohydrate agents, to absorb a part of the liquid of foods and to provide a more solid appearance which would naturally adopt. The main mission of stabilizers is to modify the water activity, an action that is translated in a change of the structure of foods, as well as its physical stability, without a modification of the nutritionals characteristics.

In this type of mixture, it is achieved that product ingredients are not disaggregated like margarine or mayonnaise and, even, in dressings for salads. Lecithin, monoglycerides or diglycerides are some substances that are added to give consistency to these foods. In industrial ice cream elaboration, one of the objectives is to obtain a very specific texture. The typical viscosity of this product is able with the use of thickeners like carragenate or guar, that make possible actions like to control ice crystals and the water to create the wished creaminess.

A specific control

All the nourishing additives, before being approved, must past through a rigorous scientific valuation that guarantees its safety. In the international scope, the Joint Expert Committee on Foods Additives (JECFA), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World-wide Organization of the Health supervise to the United Nations for (WHO). When they have been reviewed and analyzed the toxicological possible risks of a certain substance, as much in animals as in humans, if this valuation is positive, a “No Observable Adverseeffect level” (NOAEL) is fixed, that serves more ahead to establish the “permissible daily ingestion” . This amount is considered a safe reference, since the additive will comprise of the daily diet during all the life, without putting in danger the human health.

How it is known if a food contains additives? If the label includes the letter “E” and a number it indicates that the substance at issue account with the approval of the UE. Before, scientific committee must have evaluated it. This numerical form to label additives allows establishing a system of control harmonized in all the States members. The numbers are formed by three numbers. The corresponding one to the hundreds talks about the type of additive: 1 for colorings, 2 for preservatives, 3 for antioxidants ones and 4 for stabilizers.

Past and Present

The necessity to conserve food is very old. The salt and the smoking have been always two used techniques. Also after the harvests, were resorted to diverse techniques to store foods and to face long winters. In the same way, the improvement of the qualities has its roots in the past. The Egyptians used condiments to heighten the colors of their diet and the Romans used spices like colorings. Thanks to nourishing science and the technology, during century XX have been discovered and invented new substances that are added to foods for different aims, but with an only objective: to improve them.

At the moment, in agreement with Spanish Nourishing code, the additives are classified in four great groups:

  • They modify the organoleptic characteristics: colorings, aromatic, booster agents of the flavor and aroma and artificial sweeteners.
  • Physical stabilizers and aspects: gelling, emulsifiers and thickeners.
  • Substances that avoid chemical and biological alterations: antioxidants and preservatives.
  • Correctors: plasticizers, waxes and resins, helping technological and regulating of pH.

Ice Cream photo : Jessica_Merz

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Vacuum Cooling technology

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logoastonfoodsVacuum cooling technology has finally come to maturity and today presents itself with the support of new vacuum systems and sophisticated control systems as a technology of the future. Developed in Switzerland, the system is price-effective and increases quality.

Vacuum technology as such is nothing new. Vacuum cookers have been used for many years to gently deaerate and evacuate fruit preparations and flavors. What is new about the technology developed by Aston Foods Ltd in Rotkreuz, Switzerland is that it is employed in a complex process unit designed as batch and semi continuous systems; for example for baked goods. But it is not only about the cooling of baked goods. The entire baking process is redefined with this technology. The gelatinization of the starch and denaturing of the egg with are defined with the process.

Left hand pre- baked and vacuum-cooled,             Right hand: conventional product
Left hand pre- baked and vacuum-cooled, Right hand: conventional product

Baked goods

Baking is basically a simple process: flour and water, in the form of leavened dough, are heated, causing the steam that is generated to expand the matrix of egg white and starch whereby the web of egg white coagulates into elastic strands and the starch wells. When it cools, the matrix forms a firm structure (bread crumb, bread crust). So far the principle: but as every baker knows, in reality this is somewhat more complicated.

Under vacuum, this formation of the structure can be controlled in a way not feasible with conventional baking methods.

The baking process requires a lot of energy: nearly a halve kilogram of water has to be evaporated per kilogram of bread. And the bread is hot when it is removed from the oven. This means one has to let it cool off. This does not only cost money for the industry (storage space, transport, working time, outlet air). The idea of cooling the bread was thus conceived a long time ago; even with vacuum. This, however, did not work very well, because baked goods tend to collapse, dry up or lose their flavor.

The Aston process ®

The Aston process® is characterized by the fact that a normal piece of dough is only pre-baked in a conventional oven and then, in a second step, is fully baked – hot – in a “pulsating” vacuum. In so doing, the baking time of a normal roll is reduced to 11 minutes. The baking time is actually only 9 minutes. The vacuum process takes 2 minutes. The baked good leaves the vacuum station at 25ºC; the crumb being fully developed. It can immediately be eaten or packed. It can also be quick frozen when necessary. Process control is demanding, but if performed correctly, the crumb of the baked good is considerably better compared to a conventional product. Pore formation is more homogeneous, there is an increase in pore volume of approximately 10% and the color of the bread crust is nicely varied. The water content of the product is approximately 7% higher. This means about 10% less dough is necessary for a commercial product. A nutritional and commercial advantage.

A welcome side-effect of the process is that the surface of the baked good no longer gets wet, because at 25 ºC the good is in moisture equilibrium. The process is therefore particularly well suited for baked goods with fillings which have a higher water content and increased water activity (aw value), such as strudel or brioche-type pastries. This is all the more true with these products because optimum dehydration of the centre is not possible with conventional baking methods. Due to the cooling of the vacuum process, the temperature range critical for microorganisms is quickly passed trough. The “fat layer” at the contact area between the filling and the pastry thus disappears. Deviations in taste are less likely and hygiene is increased. As result, shelf-life can be extended.

Shelf-life prolongation through vacuum cooling.
Shelf-life prolongation through vacuum cooling.

What happens in the vacuum process?

The vacuum is lowered to a maximum of 10 mbar (hectopascal) during this process. This corresponds to a boiling temperature of 7ºC or air pressure at an altitude of 30000 meters.

The vacuum process parameters must be determined for each recipe. The vacuum is turned on in short intervals and is interrupted by short rest periods during which the pressure in the product can equalize again. Without this pressure equalization, the drag flow within the product would separate and the centre of the piece of dough could not be dehydrated. Instead, the flavor would be lost. The controlled drag flow thus dehydrates the centre of the baked good until the crumb is in state of equilibrium.

In addition to this, the process completes the unfinished gelatinization process of the pre-baked piece of dough. Furthermore, the process causes a partial micro-crystallization of the starch fraction which in turn results in a weak retrogradation. This step is unique in further stabilization of the baked good; analogous to the tempering of chocolate.

The appearance and stability of the crumb are improved and due to the increased moisture content of the baked good, this effect is perceived as something very positive. The elasticity of the crumb is also higher compared to conventional products. This point to the fact that the gluten is also conserved during the process and is less subject to denaturing.

Tecnología Vacuum Cooling

Potential for savings

Apart from saving on flour, water and process energy, savings can be made from the operation flow, packing and logistics, all which make the process interesting:

Because the products leave the unit at normal temperature and moisture equilibrium, they often require less elaborate packing and logistics. Because with baked goods that are stable, aeration, cooling or quick-freezing are not necessarily required.

This means that under industrial production conditions, 3.45 to 5.0 cents can be saved over the entire process, including energy, packing, logistics and returned goods. Assuming a daily production of 36 000 rolls, this amounts to a considerable saving.

Vacuum cooling. The future for baked goods production.

– 30% shorter baking times

– Cooling in just 3 minutes

– Ready for immediate use

– Longer shelf life

– Greater process certainty

– Lower power consumption

– Enhanced quality

– Less shift work

– New sales channels

Ferré & Consulting Group, official advisers and consultants of the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal)

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To increase the fiber consumption would reduce the abdominal fat content

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fibra-pan.jpgA new study shows that to eat hardly a little more fiber would have a great impact in the reduction of the size of belt of the young people in the United States. The Latin teenagers whom they increased fiber consumption during two years they obtained a significantly decrease of the quantity of fat content around the abdominal belt, while the young people who ate less fiber it grew the abdominal size.

Those were the conclusions of the equipment of Jaimie NR Davis, from the Medical school of Keck, in University of Southern California in Los Angeles. The team studied the abdominal fat content, which is most dangerous because it increases the risk to develop diabetes and cardiac disease.

The authors asked 85 men and women among 11 and 17 years with overweight to answer an initial questionnaire and two years then on the food practices. At this age, said Davis; the diet of some tends is worsening. The fiber consumption lowered some 3 grams by each 1.000 calories consumed in 46 participants and grew the same proportion in others 35.
Abdominal fat increased 21 percent in those which ate less fiber, but decreased 4 percent in those which raised their consumption. The results were published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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Analyzed Hershey and Ferrero alliance to create offer with Cadbury

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The British press hopes that the new is confirmed, while the market awaits the reaction of Kraft.

The American firm Hershey and the Italian Ferrero studied together to jointly bid for Cadbury, as the British press.

The alliance of the two companies of multinational dimension is presented in the form of an only viable alternative to the public offer of hostile acquisition (tender offer) formulated the past October by Kraft and which evaluated Cadbury in 11 thousand million EURO. This quantity was described as “ridiculous” by the British chocolate signature.

cadburyLike it was commented on a close source of Cadbury to the newspaper The Guardian, the signature did not receive for the moment notifies on this alliance supposed between the two giants although the British press indeed awaits it. The experts of the market await reaction of Kraft on a possible improvement of their offer by Cadbury.

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Berlys presents its new varieties of bread

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berlysBerlys, company specialized in manufacture and marketing of products precooked and frozen of bakery and pastry making one has the Catalogues widest of the sector of bakery. Hundreds of references which are now added with new products, from different formats and of excellent quality, are very in agreement with the last tendencies in food.

In its vast bread range Restoration Gourmet now comes to be added two of round format, the tomato Gourmet, and the Gourmet from blue cheese and fine herbs, and two of elongated format, the integral Gourmet and the Gourmet brioche. They are breads worked out with exquisite combinations of the healthiest and natural ingredients, very in agreement with the new tendencies of food.

Each unit of tomato Gourmet and cheese Gourmet weighs 40g and it is distributed in cases of 40 units. Each unit of integral Gourmet, and Gourmet brioche, weighs 35g and it is distributed in cases of 40 units.

Traditional Vienna is a white bread of  “candeal” mass with accentuated points and two not very major cuts. Of intense flavor, its bark is smooth and cracking and its crumb is compact and not very alveolate. Presented in two formats, that of 95g ideal for food snack very juicy and accompanied by sauces, and a small of 45g perfect for menu bread. Vienna Classique weighs 95g and is distributed in cases of 55 units and mini traditional Vienna of 45g is distributed in cases of 70 units.

All are advantages with the new Artisanal Bread of Berlys, considering that it requires a minimal handling. It does not need furnace: only to defrost, open and roast to obtain authentic bread, with all the flavor and savor of Andalusia. Made by hand, its crumb is very white and alveolate, with a fine bark which admits any type of sauce, without forgetting oil.

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