- Cargill is now offering a "label-friendly" replacement for monoglycerides and DATEM, emulsifiers that bakers frequently use to strengthen dough, increase volume, and soften crumbs.
- These emulsifiers are sometimes made from PHOs, which were banned by the FDA last year, when manufacturers were given a three-year deadline to reformulate or request special permission to continue using PHOs.
- "Cargill’s unmodified soy lecithin products replicate those characteristics in a cost-effective manner and give customers a ready-to-go workaround," according to a news release.
"For the last year we have done extensive testing with multiple solutions to offer a replacement for our customers," Cargill master baker Bill Gilbert said in a statement. "We’ve worked on processing, texture profile analysis, moisture and had trained sensory panelists evaluate them for 21-day shelf life breads."
Cargill said in a news release that the company had developed its unmodified soy lecithin solution even before the FDA made its PHO announcement last year. By that time, consumers' and health experts' concerns had already targeted PHOs as an unhealthy ingredient. Heinz was sued last year over claiming not to use artificial trans fats in Ore-Ida fries and tater tots, when the products allegedly did contain PHOs.
While many manufacturers have begun reformulating their products without PHOs, and had been even before the ban was announced, the Grocery Manufacturers Association has petitioned the FDA to OK the use of low levels of PHOs in food products.
Other companies have been developing non-PHO emulsifiers as well, such as Corbion, but ultimately, the total costs of making the switch to non-PHO emulsifiers could be a challenge for manufacturers.
Earlier this week, the FDA announced a ban on three long-chain perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), which formerly were commonly used in food packaging.
The company reported a 10% sales dip in its Q2 earnings report Thursday, though a profit uptick from $784 million last year to $1.39 billion.