The company said that the ingredient launch is a response to consumers’ and manufacturers’ preference for all-natural, ‘clean label’ ingredients and that the existing awareness of cranberries as high in antioxidants and beneficial for urinary tract health fits well with that.
Principal food technologist at Ocean Spray’s ITG Kristen Girard said: “What’s striking about this product from the consumer point of view is its vibrant red colour and rich texture. This colour is maintained throughout processing. As a glaze or filling, the formulation provides cakes and pastries with fruity appeal and the puree’s gelling properties make it perfect for fruit preparations.”
Other suggested applications include yoghurts, ice-creams, relishes and smoothies.
The puree, which was launched at Health Ingredients Europe in Paris last week, will be supplied directly to manufacturers for them to create their own blends and recipes.
Speaking of bakery applications in particular, a spokesperson for the company told BakeryandSnacks.com: “Cranberries can have quite a tart flavour, but the sugar content of the baked good offsets the tartness – and it has a great colour…More and more manufacturers are looking for 100 per cent fruit products, so the puree is intended to meet that demand.”
The company also asserts that manufacturers using cranberries as an ingredient benefit from the berry’s recognition as a preventative for urinary tract infection.
Research into how cranberries work has taken off in the past 15 years, sparked by the identification of proanthocyanidins – the active component of cranberries which prevents bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract – in 1994. Cranberries received a further boost in 2004 when French authorities approved a health claim that cranberries are able to reduce the amount of certain E. coli bacteria from sticking to urinary tract walls.
Ocean Spray is also promoting the puree as high in fibre and says that it blends well with other fruit due to cranberries’ high acidity and low sugar content.
Other Ocean Spray all-natural ingredients include its BerryFusions range, which are either coated or infused with natural flavours such as pineapple juice or orange oil.