At the 2015 International Dairy Foods Associaton (IDFA) International Dairy Show in Chicago last week, the company showcased its Muscle Builder 26 concept - a blend of skim milk, or casein protein, soy protein and whey protein.
Naturally sweetened and flavored, the drink contains 26g of protein and 26g of sugar per 11oz.
Skim milk is the main ingredient, but DuPont also adds cane sugar, milk protein concentrate, isolated soy protein and whey protein isolate.
“We’re challenging the norms of the industry,” Mark Cornthwaite, marketing manager at DuPont, told DairyReporter at the International Dairy Show.
“Not many are using soy [with liquid dairy] right now. It’s cheap and has good margins.”
Protein working over time
Dr Gregory Paul, marketing director of DuPont’s global customer segments, told DairyReporter these proteins work together in a way that allows delivery of amino acids and protein to take place both immediately and over a span of hours.
Whey, he explained, works quickly. It’s rapidly absorbed and rapidly oxidized by the human body, whereas the casein protein found in skim milk slowly absorbs in the body and allows for muscle repair over a span of four to five hours.
Soy is “right in the middle,” according to Paul, and keeps the body’s level of protein absorption steady.
The ratio of the drinks is 50% casein, and 25% each of soy and whey. Having soy and casein protein start off the recovery period is like “turning the engine on,” he said.
“What’s unique about this product is that those that are like it on the market are powder or, if they’re ready to drink, start with powdered protein,” Paul said.
“This is one of the first RTD beverages of its kind … that started with fluid milk.”
The opportunity to use liquid milk can help both DuPont and the milk industry, according to Paul, as the industry has excess capacity that can be used for purposes such as this.
Studying the end result
DuPont recently undertook a study to look at the impact of blended protein.
The company grouped together 68 active men in resistance exercise training for three months. Each of the men either consumed soy-dairy protein blend, whey protein isolate or isocaloric carbohydrate, a placebo.
The study found that both of the proteins supported “similar and significant” muscle gains compared with the placebo.
The soy-dairy was noted by the company as helping men in the study to “prolong lean mass growth, especially in the upper body”.
Approximately 87% of those in the soy-dairy blend group saw a 1.5kg lean muscle gain, according to DuPont, compared with 77% from whey protein and 50% from the carbohydrate placebo.