Kerry Acryleast sees higher acrylamide reduction in crackers, biscuits and bread

By Jenny Eagle

- Last updated on GMT

Kerry reports success rate 18-months after launching Acryleast. Photo: Kerry.
Kerry reports success rate 18-months after launching Acryleast. Photo: Kerry.

Related tags Acrylamide Yeast Food safety

Irish taste and nutrition company Kerry claims clients have seen higher acrylamide reduction in crackers, biscuits and bread since launching Acryleast 6 months ago.

BakeryandSnacks announced in December​, the company was partnering with Renaissance BioScience Corp to manufacture, sell and distribute Renaissance’s non-GMO acrylamide-reducing yeast enzyme, Acryleast.

NGO data

Mike Woulfe, VP, business development enzymes, Kerry, said the company has received a fantastic response since launching Acryleast, suggesting food and beverage manufacturers are taking measures to mitigate acrylamide formation in their food and are undertaking sampling to monitor levels. 

It knows as well that large global companies are setting their own internal standards, and customers exporting into these regions covered by legislation are taking action to be compliant. 

Over the last six months, Kerry licensed Renaissance’s non-GMO acrylamide-reducing yeast and announced this commercialization agreement in December 2018. We then worked to prepare our international global sales and marketing launch to many international markets​,” he said. 

We have had successful results with a broad range of applications. We are constantly exploring new applications to meet our customer needs and to tackle the wide variety of products where acrylamide levels are an issue​. 

In addition, some NGOs are looking for access to data submitted to EFSA on acrylamide levels for products, to further highlight the concern. They are calling for the introduction of mandatory maximum levels. This shows that NGOs are keeping pressure on the acrylamide issue and getting more hard-hitting. This creates considerable brand risk for the F&B industry​.” 

Acryleast is similar to a traditional baker’s yeast, but unlike that, it does not provide the same functionalities as a yeast; rather its sole functionality and purpose is to reduce acrylamide and it does not impart any taste defects to the finished product. 

It eliminates the need to lower temperature, reduce processing time or change raw materials and is effective at low doses. 

Process flows

The level of acrylamide reduction using Acryleast depends on the application, process flows, contact time with Acryleast and the recipe​,” added Woulfe. 

Our customers have reported a much higher acrylamide reduction in full-scale manufacturing trials. We have seen this theme throughout applications such as crackers, biscuits and bread​. 

Acrylamide is formed when carbohydrate rich foods are baked, fried, roasted or toasted. Food items of concern are typically fine bakery foods and baby foods. Items which are typically dry in composition with low moisture levels, e.g. crackers, biscuits, potato chips, bread​. 

We also see a common rule of thumb is those items which are browner in colour contain high acrylamide levels​.” 

Woulfe said foods like biscuits for infants and young children are of major concern. Discussions on the setting of maximum levels (MLs) for processed cereal-based foods and baby foods for infants and young children are ongoing.  

Families are also moving away from feeding their children certain foods for toddlers or young children to tackle childhood obesity due to concerns around the levels of sugars present in these foods such as rusks, he added. 

Customer engagement

Since launching Acryleast, we have seen a steady increase in engagement with customers over their concern of acrylamide reduction​,” said Woulfe. 

Kerry is working hand in hand with our customers and supporting them in carrying out plant trials with Acryleast. They are choosing to use Acryleast for a variety of reasons, for e.g. having no impact on taste or texture and its organic suitability (US region).​ 

This is particularly relevant for organic baby foods since regulations are expected to get more stringent in this area. And the fact that it is the only truly non-GMO solution available on the market​.”

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