Food & Beverage Insider is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Extend your R&D capabilities: A systems approach to innovation – article

Extend your R&D capabilities: A systems approach to innovation – article
Ingredion's food systems approach to the innovation process and product formulation taps into the company’s deep understanding of ingredient functionality and the market, reducing complexity for customers, helping them get products to market quickly.

A systems approach to innovation

Accelerate your innovation process and extend your R&D capabilities

In the quickly evolving world of food and beverage product development, innovation is the name of the game. Consumers now expect a lot from the products they purchase, including a strong nutritional profile, exotic flavors, portable formats and ingredients that are sustainably produced and familiar-- along with a strong helping of transparency. New ideas are great, but with all these things in mind, going from concept to marketplace is more challenging than ever.

To address these requirements, Ingredion has developed a food systems approach to the innovation process and product formulation that taps into the company’s deep understanding of ingredient functionality and the market.  These systems take the complexity out of the process to help customers formulate the right products and get them to market quickly.

The right products faster

The primary goal is to develop new products that meet emerging consumer demands and streamline the process to get them to market efficiently. From lower sugar products to alternative meat and dairy, Ingredion starts with proprietary insights and resources to help brands understand the trends and then provides a deep and diverse applications knowledge, including exclusive sensory, voice-of-consumer and analytical capabilities, to expedite product formulation.

In partnership with your brand’s development team, Ingredion works to understand the complexities of your formulation and market challenge — putting together the right ingredient system that delivers optimal results to meet your product needs and brand promise.  These solutions may include:

  • Extending shelf-life stability with stabilizer systems
  • Improving mouthfeel with texturizer systems
  • Delivering high-protein appeal and plant-based protein alternatives with protein plus stabilizer systems
  • Reducing sugar while maintaining taste and texture with sweetener and functional build-back (FBB) systems
  • Enhancing consumer appeal with label-friendly systems

“We help customers accelerate their product innovation,” said Corie Beyers, Strategic Marketing Manager, Food Systems at Ingredion. “Our collaborative food systems approach brings together all our expertise—from insights to formulating know-how, to hands-on problem solving—and makes it easily accessible.”

Ingredion can help overcome bottlenecks in the system with an expansive portfolio of solutions for the most relevant consumer trends, including starch-based texturizers, gums, clean and simple ingredients, plant-based proteins, and sugar-reduction and specialty sweeteners. Ingredion solutions provide differentiated options for formulas or custom-tailored systems that can quickly meet specific formulation needs.

With an expansive portfolio, Ingredion’s approach focuses upon a brand’s unique needs and requirements, creating system solutions with the optimal synergies and functionalities required. With a customer centric mind-set, Ingredion takes a flexible, agnostic approach, drawing upon a robust ingredient system portfolio and the company’s full range of differentiated ingredient solutions–plus innovative solutions from outside suppliers when needed.

Streamlined R&D capabilities

Research and development is one of the most important but time-consuming aspects of new product development or reformulation.  Ingredion has spent decades developing deep knowledge on texturizers, stabilizers and differentiated ingredient solutions, so its team of SOLUTIONS GURUS™ offers experienced technical guidance and coordinated support to provide tested solutions that meet desired food and beverage application requirements and key processing challenges. They can also develop optimized ingredient systems that work in synergy with a brand’s formulas.

“Whether it’s for new product innovation or renovation of an existing formulation, our food systems experts use a consultative approach to dive deep into understanding your needs to help you both achieve your goals more quickly and minimize risks along the way,” Beyers explained.

Product consistency and quality

Agility and flexibility continue throughout the R&D production process, ensuring product consistency and quality. Included is expert in-house blending and agglomeration for consistent ingredient quality and a proactive domestic stocking strategy, reducing lead times and boosting supply-chain security. This robust production process is continuously adaptable, providing quick turnaround and easy up-scaling potential, allowing a brand to flex their production needs.

And the process doesn’t just work for the big guys. Ingredion’s food systems accommodate low minimum order quantities for smaller-scale launches and pilot-trial evaluations.

To ensure quality along the way, Ingredion’s solutions are tested at every stage to ensure product consistency. The quality assurance system adheres to standards that go above and beyond industry norms.

Supply chain security

Supply chain is a priority for most everyone these days. Ingredion’s food systems strategy takes the complexity out of ingredient sourcing while assuring supply security. Ingredion approaches ingredient sourcing as a single system versus multiple ingredients. This alleviates supply intricacies by lowering the number of ingredient inputs and simplifying manufacturing. It’s an ingredient agnostic approach where Ingredion looks at functionality and performance to find appropriate solutions for desired product function and values.

For example, if a product requires clean ingredients, Ingredion offers a broad portfolio of options with clean label attributes and strong functionality and sensorial appeal. Plus, Ingredion has the scale and purchasing power to ensure their consistent and reliable access.  

A high-touch partner

Ultimately, Ingredion’s food systems approach gives brands an innovation partner from concept to commercialization. Ingredion’s team provides support at every step to make innovation simpler, faster and smarter. This includes full-support in formulation, prototyping, testing and scale-up, access to working pilot plants to fine-tune formulations and processes. The result yields recommendations tailored to a brand’s precise requirements.

Ingredion also personalizes the process by giving brands direct access to a broad spectrum of experts across food and beverage ingredient categories, providing seamless information that quickly resolves issues.

“Our food systems experts will partner with you at every step of the process to create an optimized system that works in synergy in your formulation and helps reduce complexity in your operation,” Beyers added. “We have the end-to-end expertise, expansive portfolio and agile, quick-turn capabilities to get you from whiteboard to reality, faster.”