Reducing sugar without compromising on taste

23 Oct 2019

Article


Sugar has become a public health concern in Africa, specifically South Africa, as a high sugar intake is associated with an increased risk of illnesses such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and dental cavities. An estimated 3.5 million South African have diabetes and more than half of all South Africans are classified as medically overweight.


But in patisserie and dessert products, sugar is not only used to give a product a delicious taste; it has lots of other functions. This raises a dilemma.
 

The need for sugar reduction

We’re all more conscious about the sugar content in our foods. And we should: the World Health Organisation (WHO) expects type 2 diabetes to increase with 55% in the next 20 years! To counter that, some countries set sugar taxes or restrict advertising of sugar-containing products to children, and many countries have introduced new limits on the amount of added sugar in products.

Of course, sugar reduction is on the agenda of Puratos too. It’s an important part of our Health & Well-being programme, which answers to the need of consumers for healthy products –containing more grains and fruits and less salt, sugar or fat – but also to their need for products that contribute to their well-being, like plant-based or gluten-free products and products with a clean and clear label. But for Puratos, sugar reduction is not just a matter of simply decreasing the amount of sugar in products. There’s more to sugar than just a sweet taste!
 

The need for sugar in patisserie finished goods

In the world of patisserie and dessert finished goods, sugar has an important function. It does not just give a product it’s delicious taste, sugar does a lot more. That means we have to be innovative. Before we start reducing the sugar, we have to carefully consider how to compensate for these effects with another approach or ingredient.
 

Puratos’ golden rules for achieving sugar reduction

In our approach for achieving sugar reduction, we use three golden rules:

  1. We offer a solution for every part of a finished good
    Puratos provides a sugar-reduced solution for every layer in a patisserie product, from the base, to the filling, to the decoration. 

  2. We never compromise on taste or texture
    Extensive consumer research has shown us that consumers never, ever, want to compromise on taste or texture. Eating patisserie is enjoying a moment of indulgence and we respect their pleasure.

  3. We provide clean(er) label 
    Puratos uses natural fibres to replace sugars. This enables us not only to keep the label as clean as possible, but also means added fibre consumption (another health plus for your customers!).