Sector News

Corbion nets patent for low-sodium vinegar food preservation process

August 21, 2022
Consumer Packaged Goods

Corbion has received a patent for a method for increasing the efficacy of vinegar-based preservation solutions. By providing higher pathogen control with less taste impact in processed meats, the process helps to improve safety and decrease food waste.

The patent was given to Corbion for the distinctive technology it employs to create highly concentrated types of vinegar which allow meat processors to more effectively limit the growth of Listeria and other pathogens without sacrificing the sensory attributes of their products.

Using this method, Corbion develops products like Verdad Opti Powder N450 and N460, free-flowing powders that offer a variety of functional advantages, such as extending the shelf life of products and improving food safety, without compromising on taste or texture.

Safeguarding a fresh taste
Lonneke van Dijk, senior business director of Preservation at Corbion, says “Corbion’s history of innovation in ingredient technology has often included advances like the one this patent represents,” referring to the sensory preservation qualities.

For instance, Verdad Opti Powder N450 can supply a larger dose of vinegar without having a negative effect on flavor, resulting in a stronger microbiological effect. In addition, increasing product shelf life helps lower emissions and expenses related to food waste.

“Because this patented process produces the ‘best-tasting’ low-sodium vinegar powders on the market, our customers can have more effective, label-friendly solutions that protect consumers’ health, product quality and operating efficiencies at the same time,” van Dijk says.

N450 is worth its salt
Nutritionally speaking, N450, a special mixture of vinegar and sea salt, is also well suited for products with decreased sodium level claims because it is made using potassium rather than sodium. It was previously noted that diets high in potassium reduce the detrimental health effects of salt intake.

Although producers frequently utilize potassium-based solutions to make low-salt choices, most of these solutions can only be used at low doses due to adverse taste effects.

Even at modest dose rates, the high vinegar concentration produced by N450 has a higher antibacterial impact.

Preservation that stretches beyond food
N450 alone is extending the shelf life of 80,000 tons of processed meat in North America for up to 90 days while maintaining the sensory integrity of those goods.

According to the firm, preventing mold development results in fewer items being thrown out as waste, allowing for more effective resource utilization and reduced carbon footprint throughout the manufacture, packing and distribution of those products.

Furthermore, it claims that postponing the deterioration of fresh meat, seafood and other chilled items minimizes product waste even further while fostering customer loyalty.

“Foods that look, smell and taste fresh at the point of consumption – in addition to being safe – create a basis for repeat purchases and business growth,” according to the company.

Vouching for vinegar
Vinegar is created by a two-step fermentation process using acetic acid and water, according to the Harvard School of Public Health. First, yeast feed on the sugar or starch of any liquid from a plant food such as fruits, whole grains, potatoes or rice.

Alcohol is produced once this liquid ferments. Later, the alcohol is re-fermented into vinegar over a period of weeks or months by the acetic acid bacteria Acetobacter and oxygen.

Although acetic acid is what gives vinegar its characteristic sour and pungent tastes and smells, vinegar also has trace amounts of vitamins, mineral salts, amino acids and polyphenolic chemicals.

In turn, Van Dijk explains that “the preservative power of vinegar has been part of the human diet for thousands of years,” and that the company is enthusiastic about taking the natural mechanism of fermentation and building on its ability to help preserve foods.

By Mieke Meintjes


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