March 16, 2021

Clean label flavors: from a trend to a standard

The concept of “clean label” is not regulated, so it has no precise definition. It is more broadly defined by key principles such as transparency, naturalness and sustainability. The nutritional quality of the products is also taken into account. In practice, the term “clean label” is given to products that have undergone a simplification process in which additives and other allergens have been removed from their composition, and whose  packaging contains clear and simple language.

OSF Flavors keeps up with consumer demand

As consumers shape the market and product offers, we have incorporated clean label in response to their demands. Customers who have become more well-informed about the composition of food and beverage products are avoiding those that contain potentially toxic and unhealthy additives and are instead looking for natural products with a clear and transparent composition. As a result, these consumers rely on products whose labels contain claims such as “free,” “sugar free,” and “additives free,” and organic products have become more and more popular. According to a study by the New Hope Network, the sale of organic products increased by 6.6% in the United States in 2018.

The move towards clean label has impacted the entire food industry, including the food supplements, beverages, and sports nutrition sectors. New products are designed around clean labels, and old formulas are modified. However, modifying an existing product can pose a challenge as it is necessary to maintain shelf life and to preserve the organoleptic properties. This is where OSF Flavors comes in.

How are we answering the "clean taste" challenge?

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OSF Flavors is responding to the challenges presented by clean label requirements by developing natural and organic flavors. The composition of natural flavors is simple: they are made from ingredients that come from nature. Natural flavor profiles and aromas therefore originate from a product that exists naturally and is transformed to extract its flavor components. In response to the clean taste challenge, we provide you with natural and organic flavors. This is the first step towards clean label. By expanding our range of natural molecules, we have made it possible to create natural flavors that are not just the basic chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, but also a variety of innovative flavors, as well.

By improving the taste of vegetarian and vegan products, we are responding to both clean label challenges and the needs of consumers. Considerations related to climate change, awareness of the ecological impact of livestock farming, and animal welfare concerns are prompting people to question their meat consumption, which has led many to rebalance their protein intake between both animal and vegetable proteins. However, there are often consumer complaints related to the strong aftertaste associated with some plant proteins. Our solution? We have developed natural flavors to mask these off-tastes and thus support our customers in the development of new products based on plant proteins.

By choosing the right partner

At OSF Flavors, we have been developing solutions for more than 30 years to bring you cleaner products. In order to do so, we pay particular attention to our sourcing and the choice of our partners. When it comes to selecting our ingredients, quality and naturalness are our first priorities.

OSF Flavors has also taken its clean label initiative to another level. By “clean label” we mean a clean and sustainable way of creating and manufacturing our products. Renewable solar power is the only source of electricity we use to power our production facility.

In addition, we offer organic flavors certified by QAI: Quality Assurance International. This international organic certification body is accredited by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), which operates in the USA, Canada, Latin America, the European Union and Japan.

We believe that we all have a role to play in the challenges of the clean label. As we encourage our consumers to eat better, we understand that to do so, they should not have to sacrifice eating what’s good for them for what tastes good. It is therefore our job to bring them products that are both.

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