Roquette promotes sugar-free chocolate at HIE
growing shift in what consumers want from indulgence food products.
And the development of the chocolate, carried out in cooperation with a top Dutch confectionery house, also signals a new marketing approach.
The French ingredients giant has specifically targeted end users as well as manufacturers during and after the development of the range, emphasising growing acceptance that consumer often have to taste something to believe it.
"We were able to demonstrate to consumers that this chocolate can still be categorised under pleasure," Philippe Caillat, Roquette business development manager told FoodNavigator.com at the HIE show in Frankfurt.
Maltitol is not a new product, but Roquette claims it is the best sugar substitute. It possesses very similar properties to sugar, and the company claims that the substance is the only sugar replacer that doesn't require you to add more fat to achieve the desired creaminess.
Food makers can replace up to 100 per cent of the sugar with maltitol.
Maltitol is an important product for Roquette. The company recently filed a suit over its maltitol product, claiming that Yucheng Lujian Biological Co and Fass Food Ingredients had infringed its patents.
The complaint identified maltitol crystal products that allegedly infringe upon Roquette's patented technology. Roquette said that its patent protects new forms of maltitol crystals, for example bipyramidal maltitol forms, which are designed to maximise performance in the production of chocolate and chewing gum.
It is also significant that an ingredient used in luxury chocolate should be promoted at a show such as Health Ingredients Europe. It underlines just how far healthy ingredients have penetrated so-called luxury segments of the market.
"We decided to launch this product onto the market because of the demand," said Caillat.
"People have been coming up to us and saying, finally someone is thinking like us!' We were not sceptical about promoting sugar-free luxury chocolate - we knew that the market was there."
Simiarly, Caillat claims that Meert was also unconcerned abut the reception the product would receive. What they were concerned about was quality.
"Taste is everything," said Caillat. "We knew that there could be no compromise on taste.
"This is why shows such as this are so important to us. We can show people that we are involved in creating healthier food, and that Roquette can develop solutions. The idea at this show is to promote further the idea that maltitol is a really innovative ingredient for food makes look to combine pleasure and well-being."