Frutarom rolls out flavour systems for 'wellness' ice creams

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Related tags: Ice cream, Nutrition

In the same week that the world's number one ice cream maker
announces the roll out of health and wellness ice cream to fuel
growth, Israeli flavours firm Frutarom launches its functional ice
cream product range.

The Tel-Aviv-based company said the new launch will offer ice cream makers a "pre-integrated" solution to target the booming functional food market.

Mintel​ predicts the £835 million UK market alone for food and drinks will double in the next five years to £1.7 billion.

And in 2003, sales of functional foods and drinks were estimated to be over six times the value of those in 1998: persuasive figures that are propelling food and drink makers to new product designs with a functional health twist.

"On the whole, Mintel's research appears extremely positive for suppliers of functional food and drink products,"​ said Amanda Lintott, a consumer analyst at Mintel.

The ambitious Frutarom firm said its solution "combines natural fruits, natural flavour extracts and natural functional ingredients that enhance and support well-being."

Examples include ice cream with aloe vera "to support inner beauty"​, or with green tea for "stress relief"​.

The company claims its capabilities to "provide integrative products"​ have been given a boost through the recent acquisition of IFF's European food systems unit.

Part of its ambitious, and acquisitive, strategy to become one of the top ten global flavour firms, in August 2004 Frutarom completed the €30 million acquisition of International Flavours & Fragrances fruit preparation operations in Europe.

Buying into IFF's fruit and vegetable extract business has given Frutarom a firm foothold in the growing natural ingredients market. The fruit and vegetable extracts market has risen in parallel to the burgeoning functional food trend, itself driven by the consumer's desire to improve health and prevent disease through food and beverage consumption.

The €819.9 million European and US fruit and vegetable extracts and powders market is on course to grow 4.5 per cent annually, reaching €1.07 billion by 2009, estimate market analysts Frost & Sullivan.

Last week Unilever, the owner of Wall's ice cream and about 2000 ice cream brands, announced a "commitment to healthier ice cream options"​, pouring 40 per cent of its €50m annual budget on ice cream R&D into the health and wellness sector.

"We are now looking at how we can incorporate ingredients like 'super' fruits, which are high in added nutrients such as vitamin, minerals or phytochemicals, into ice cream,"​ said Don Darling, vice president development at Unilever Ice Cream.

Related topics: Ingredients, Ice Cream

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