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Against new regulations by the UK government to combat rising levels of diabetes and obesity, a UK cake manufacturer turned to AAK to help create a new recipe with less sugar and no increase in cost.

The need to reduce sugar in our diet has become a major health issue in the UK.  Sugar is considered a major cause of type 2 diabetes and obesity, which costs the UK National Health Service  over £1 billion a year.

In response, Public Health England published guidelines to the food industry in 2017 to reduce sugar levels by 20 percent by 2020 in several food categories including biscuits and cakes.  However, this is not an easy thing to accomplish due to the cost and technical implications involved.  Furthermore, sugar substitutes, such as high-intensity sweeteners, polyols, stevia or inulin, all have their own cost and formulation issues.

Perfectly positioned to help

Nevertheless, a major UK retailer challenged a large UK cake manufacturer to develop a line of healthier cakes with reduced sugar and no increase in cost.  To make this possible, the cake manufacturer turned to AAK UK for help.

This level of sugar reduction had never been attempted before on a major private label cake line so extensive research was an important part of the project.  Fortunately, AAK UK had already conducted internal studies into the type of fat used in a product that could affect sweetness perception in baked goods.

The perfection solution 

AAK UK created a co-development program to minimise cost and increase the functionality of the sugar alternative ingredients.  The solution involved replacing the butter with butter alternatives that had the same melt profile, flavour, colour and emulsifying properties, were lower in saturated fat and cost, and also required less sugar alternatives to achieve the same sweetness.

Outstanding results

The launch of the newly formulated cake recipe was a huge success and outsold the original recipe by 100 percent and earned an award for "successful new innovation from a retailer".  Following this, a second retailer introduced the same technology into their range of in-store cafe cakes and experienced an uplift in sales of 40 percent.

Innovation and collaboration are at the core of what makes AAK different.  These results show how our unique co-development approach is invaluable in helping customers to overcome challenges and achieve their business goals.