2007 IFT Show Recap

View the 2007 IFT Photo Gallery


Serving up a hefty dose of flavor to help the health go down, exhibitors at this week’s Foodsmarts IFT 2007 – the annual meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists – clearly demonstrated a growing movement toward increasing the health benefits consumers derive from their food and drink.


Nowhere was that clearer at the Chicago event than at the tables of flavor and ingredient suppliers who serve the beverage community. At Foodsmarts, there aren’t many labels or brand names in evidence, but the functional selling points touted by so many beverage marketers, like antioxidants and energy, were echoed in many of the ingredients being spotlighted.


0pt;”>So attendees were able to try products whipped up just for the show, like the grapefruit-flavored energy drinks available at ingredient distributor Univar USA‘s booth, which were parked right next to a batch of Vitamin C and Calcium-fortified jellybeans. DSM Nutritional Products showed their premix ingredients – a set of nutritional additives and flavorings used by many manufacturers to fortify drinks – in mango and berry slushies, while green tea extracts promoting both clear thinking and metabolism enhancement bubbled away at the booth of ingredient company Taiyo, which supplies a growing cadre of beverage manufacturers with the EGCG-laden tea powders.


While the role of the food scientist might once have been to come up with an additive to prevent spoilage or promote clarity in a cold-filled beverage, now they apparently have a new mandate, one supplied by manufacturers and their customers to help consumers guzzle their way to health. From acai to pomegranate, teas to coffee berries, marketers looking for a way to jazz up their product claims faced a symphony of choices


Of course, with so many friendly flavor notes supplied by sugars and fats, there was also a solid emphasis on what products don’t do as much as what they can do. For example, both Tate & Lyle and Corn Products International focused on sweeteners that aren’t as calorie-laden as high-fructose corn syrup. Signs at competitor Archer Daniels Midland’s booth trumpeted the company’s role in providing treats that will remind Baby Boomers of their pasts while allowing them to continue into the future unburdened by extra fat.


After all, if you’re drinking your way to health, you should look good while you’re doing it, right? Well, BevNET was there, and here we present you with photographic evidence that everyone on the scene was doing just that.


View the 2007 IFT Photo Gallery


********* IMPORTANT REMINDER *********

BevNET IBQ’s second issue, due out in September, will contain further coverage of the show and additional flavor/ingredient news. For more information on how to participate in BevNET IBQ magazine, please contact Brad Dixon at 617-715-9682.