Edible films could keep prepared foods fresher

By Elaine Watson

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Flavor

Edible films separating dry and watery components in foods could help extend the shelf-life of prepared foods including cheesecake and pizza without compromising taste or appearance, according to a leading supplier.

Watson, a US firm specialising in edible film technology, has been testing the films in everything from sandwiches to frozen ‘hot pockets’ and pizza. They have proved particularly effective at preventing moisture from migrating from the toppings into the base and making it soggy.

As soon as the pizza is cooked, the temperature-activated tasteless film simply ‘melts’ into the product, said international sales manager Ann Metzner. She was speaking at a seminar hosted by Cornelius, which distributes Watson products in the UK.

The firm has also developed edible ingredient pouches as a novel means of delivering precise quantities of enzymes, colours, flavours and other ingredients into commercial-sized batches of products.

Watson has been selling the sol-u-pak dissolvable packages to American customers for several years. They were ideal for firms with low-skilled staff that were looking for a hassle-free means of delivering precise quantities of minor ingredients into recipes quickly and accurately, said Metzner.

The packs, which are soluble in cold water and dissolve in seconds or minutes depending on the application, are made from gum arabic or gum acacia. They impart no flavour or texture to the end product, and are now available in the UK via Cornelius.

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