28th October 2019

A new approach in using plant-based oils and fats could hold the key to developing products that are healthier, suitable for vegans and more sustainable for the planet, says AAK ahead of its appearance at Food Matters Live 2019.

The subject will be explored in a talk at the event, on 19-20 November at ExCeL, London, by Dr Kaly Chatakondu, Commercial Director at AAK. AAK is a global leader in value-adding vegetable oil solutions, headquartered in Sweden, and the leading speciality oils and fats provider in the UK. 

According to Dr Chatakondu, a dramatic shift is taking place in the food industry as consumers no longer take their dietary cues from big budget traditional TV advertising. Instead we see a rise in the influence of social media on food trends. Many food trends that may have been previously short lived can now all simultaneously gain momentum and importance in the consumer mind.

Suddenly the food industry is challenged to make products that are suitable for vegans lower in sugar or calories or saturated fat free from plastic packaging sustainable for the environment, taste delicious and still look good enough to Instagram!  

One novel approach to this challenge is to explore synergies between plant oil components and other ingredients in a food rather than looking at ingredients individually.

This approach provides a new toolkit for food developers whether it is for a vegan carrot cake a reduced sugar chocolate chip cookie positive nutrition in the form of high Omega 3 bread or a healthy smoothie.  

AAK will be exhibiting in the Ingredients Zone at Stand B45. Visitors will be invited to see and taste some of the latest products arising from a plant oil based approach to the most important food challenges of today. The company will be showcasing a range of food products from baked goods to healthy smoothies.  

Dr Chatakondu said: “Food manufacturers have to respond quickly to today’s food trends. These trends are increasingly driven by the internet and social media and are therefore harder to predict. A traditional approach such as simply attempting to replace sugar with a sugar alternative often has limitations and drawbacks in cost and functionality. A different approach can be very useful for major consumer needs such as veganism calorie reduction or the incorporation of positive health ingredients such as omega-3 oils.

“The challenge is to meet these needs without adding cost, without compromising taste and texture yet delivering a more nutritious product. This is where food science through plant oils can be the missing piece of the puzzle. Small changes in the way plant oils are used can provide big changes in functionality. This can allow food developers to change the actual diet of the population in a positive way so consumers need not compromise on the taste they are familiar with, eat healthier whilst also caring for the planet.”

Aak Fml Stand Web

Through a co-development approach, AAK works in partnership with other ingredient companies and with food manufacturers to co-develop next generation solutions using sustainable plant-based oils and fats. These include products such as vegan butter alternatives lower calorie filling fats vegan egg replacers natural shelf life enhancing bread fats ingredients for meat and dairy alternatives, label friendly sugar reduction in cakes and cookies and many other areas.

AAK is the leading provider of value-adding vegetable oil solutions in the UK, with more than 140 years of experience working across every food industry including Chocolate and ConfectioneryBakeryDairy, Special Nutrition and Foodservice.

AAK has over 20 different production facilities multiple customer innovation centres and sales offices in more than 100 countries with more than 3,000 employees. The business is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Stockholm and its headquarters is in Malmö, Sweden