12 January - 20 June 2016

Other headlines

  • Researchers indicate multivitamins are not necessary for pregnant women
  • Pop-up restaurant serving 3D-printed food goes on world tour
  • Want to feel happier?  Eat more fruit and vegetables!
  • Virtual reality system allows wearer to smell, taste and chew food without consuming calories
  • Seaweed could potentially be used to replace salt in foods
  • Consuming three mushrooms enriched with Vitamin D2 provides 100% RDI for vitamin D
  • Genetically-modified labelling bill approved by US Senate
  • Global edible insect market is set to exceed USD 522 million by 2023
  • Energy drinks can’t carry alertness health claims
  • Is pasta fattening?  Not according to Italian scientists

Researchers indicate multivitamins are not necessary for pregnant women
According to research published in Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin and cited widely in the popular media, most expectant mothers do not need to take multivitamins. The researchers found that supplements did not improve the health of mothers or babies although they do state that there was evidence that folic acid and vitamin D supplementation were beneficial with folic acid having the “strongest evidence” to support its use. They indicated that while pregnant women might feel they should buy multivitamins to give their baby a good start, they should resist this pressure and are quoted by the BBC as saying that “The only supplements recommended for all women during pregnancy are folic acid and vitamin D, which are available at relatively low cost” The food supplements industry is represented by the Health Food Manufacturers' Association and the Association suggests that many women hoping to have children do not get sufficient nutrients from their diet alone and notes that supplements can help fill the gaps. A spokeswoman from the Royal College of Midwives, Janet Fyle, is quoted as saying that “We would encourage women who are pregnant or are thinking of becoming pregnant to have a healthy, varied diet including fresh fruit and vegetables, alongside taking folic acid supplements.” Fyle added that “We would also stress that there is no need for pregnant women to 'eat for two'. This is a myth, and all that is required is a normal balanced amount of food." (BBC)

RSSL provides vitamin analysis in a wide range of matrices including drinks, fortified foods, pre-mixes and multi-vitamin tablets. For more information please contact Customer Services on +44 (0) 118 918 4076 or email enquiries@rssl.com 

Pop-up restaurant serving 3D-printed food goes on world tour
A pop-up gastropub, claiming to be the world’s first 3D-printing restaurant, is about to tour major world cities starting in London from 25 – 27 July. “Food Ink” promises diners nine courses of 3D-printed food made in to “culinary sculptures”. The sculptures are created using portable 3D printers operated by a team of chefs working to their own original recipes.  Any food that can be made in to a paste, can potentially be used in the printers and this includes cheese, dough and chocolate. Dishes are created by adding different layers and served with non-printed side dishes. “Food Ink” indicate that the décor and some furniture will also be 3D printed. Following The London event, “Food Ink” moves on to other cities including Berlin, Dubai, Seoul, Rome, Tel Aviv, Barcelona, Paris, Amsterdam, Toronto, New York City, Taipei, Las Vegas, Sao Paolo, Tokyo, Austin, Singapore, Los Angeles, Cape Town, Sydney and Reykjavik. (Seeker.com)

Want to feel happier?  Eat more fruit and vegetables!
New research soon to be published in the American Journal of Public Health has suggested that eating more fruit and vegetables can substantially increase a person’s happiness levels. In a press releases, the authors of the study, report “that people who changed from almost no fruit and veg to eight portions of fruit and veg a day would experience an increase in life satisfaction equivalent to moving from unemployment to employment. The well-being improvements occurred within 24 months.” The study involved 12,386 Australian people who participated in Household, Income, and Labour Dynamics in Australia Survey.  The researchers analysed food diaries from this study and measured the participant’s psychological well-being.  Happiness was reported to increase for each extra daily portion of fruit and vegetables up to eight portions per day even after taking into account   confounding factors such as people’s income and life circumstances.  The team note that they “think it may be possible eventually to link this study to current research into antioxidants which suggests a connection between optimism and carotenoid in the blood. However they argue that further research is needed in this area.” (Newswire)

RSSL’S Functional Ingredients Laboratory can test the antioxidant capacity of foods.  For more information please contact Customer Services on +44 (0) 118 918 4076 or email enquiries@rssl.com 

Virtual reality system allows wearer to smell, taste and chew food without consuming calories
A VR system, developed by Project Nourished, allows a wearer to smell, taste and even chew any food virtually without consuming a single calorie.  The headset includes a VR headset, aromatic diffuser, bone conduction transducer, gyroscope utensil, virtual cocktail glasses and 3D printed food.  It is reported that the company wanted to investigate how people, concerned about calorie intake or suffering from health-related issues, can eat meals without restriction.   The bone conduction transducer mimics chewing, and sends a chomping sensation from the wearer’s mouth to ear drums using the wearer’s soft tissues and bones as its vessel.  The 3D printed food, is used to articulate taste, texture and consistency. (Daily Mail)

Seaweed could potentially be used to replace salt in foods
According to Fraunhofer researchers, seaweed could potentially be used to replace salt. The researchers note that salt is high in sodium and this can contribute to high blood pressure and heart disease.  The research, an EU-funded TASTE project, involves partners from Iceland, Ireland, France, Spain, Slovenia and Germany.  It aims to find an algae product that can be processed industrially as a salt substitute with no odour intensive substances.  The scientists studied the aroma and taste of brown algae and developed essential components that were tested in bread.  The TASTE's project focused on three large saltwater algae: Ascophyllum nodosum, Saccharina latissima and Fucus vesiculosus. Using the algae, the researchers produced a brownish-green seaweed powder by grinding, cooking, blanching and drying the algae.  The product is currently being testing in sausage products, snacks, soups and sauces. (Science Daily)

RSSL can determine the composition of food and drink products, including the sodium content. We also have considerable experience in re-formulating products to provide more healthy options including low salt, low sugar versions and using pre- and probiotics.  For more information please contact Customer Services on +44 (0) 118 918 4076 or email enquiries@rssl.com 

Consuming three mushrooms enriched with Vitamin D2 provides 100% RDI for vitamin D
According to Agri-View, people can get 100% of their recommended daily intake of vitamin D by consuming just three mushrooms which have been enhanced with Vitamin D. The mushrooms have been produced by Monaghan Mushroom in Tyholland County Monaghan and are being retailed by Marks & Spencer.  Geoff Taylor, product manager at Monaghan Mushrooms, said “We’ve known for a long time that mushrooms are a food for the future; they’re low in calories yet rich in potassium, B vitamins and folate.  Knowing that a lack of vitamin D in the UK is a major health issue, we started working toward developing a vitamin D mushroom. New research shows that in the UK we don’t get enough vitamin D from sunlight alone, meaning dietary vitamin D is absolutely needed.  The longer mushrooms are out in the sunlight the more vitamin D they contain; however they don’t need sunlight to grow. Our mushrooms are grown inside houses where they are exposed to a high-wattage light for a few seconds. The bulb, which contains wavelengths of light including ultraviolet, acts like the sun and through a natural process the mushrooms make vitamin D, just like wild outdoor-grown mushrooms.” (Agri-View)

RSSL provides vitamin analysis in a wide range of matrices including drinks, fortified foods, pre-mixes and multi-vitamin tablets, including the analysis for Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3.  For more information please contact Customer Services on +44 (0) 118 918 4076 or email enquiries@rssl.com 

Genetically-modified labelling bill approved by US Senate
A bill to label foods containing genetically-modified ingredient in the U.S has been approved by the US Senate. According to Reuters “the measure now goes to the House of Representatives, where it is expected to pass”.  The vote of 63-60 means that GMO ingredients would have to be displayed on foods using words, pictures or a mobile scanning bar code.  As to which ingredients would be considered genetically modified, this decision would be decided by the U.S Agriculture Department (USDA).  This nationwide law, which would override state laws, is favoured by the food industry as state-by-state differences can cause an increase in labelling and distribution costs.  However Reuters note that there may be a number of loopholes for some ingredients due to the definition of bioengineered food.  Critics say that beet sugar and soybean oil, which can be derived from genetically-engineered crops but contain next to no genetic material by the time they are processed, may not fall under the law's definition.

RSSL offers qualitative and real-time quantitative analytical services for GM soya and maize in raw materials and finished products. For more information please contact Customer Services on +44 (0) 118 918 4076 or email enquiries@rssl.com 

Global edible insect market is set to exceed USD 522 million by 2023
According to Global Market Insights, Inc, the global edible insects market size is set to exceed USD 522 million by 2023.  In their latest research report, they state that there is an increasingly positive outlook on insect consumption, as a healthy, alternative and sustainable protein source. Beetles dominated demand and were valued at USD 9.7 million in 2015. Insects can be consumed whole or in powder form for flour, protein bars and other snacks. Grasshoppers, locusts and crickets could see significant demand gains, estimated at more than 42% CAGR up to 2023. Pet foods have seen increasing use of grasshoppers as dried, whole or frozen form for fish, turtles, birds and pets. Food products use cricket, mealworm and grasshopper powders, rich in protein content and containing essential minerals and amino acids. Black soldier fly larvae and maggots are considered as a substitute in fishmeal feed in the aquaculture industry and are consumed either whole or as a processed meal. Grasshoppers, beetles, crickets, cockroaches, termites, scale insects, flies, bees, wasps and ants are food sources for poultry which may also fuel edible insects market growth. However it is noted that a robust and clearly define regulatory guideline for registration, classification and commercialisation of insect-based foods will be critical for industry evolution. While bug-based foods are sold across the U.S. as well as EU, it is reported that “participants are somewhat in the dark with respect to labelling and selling guidelines”. (PRNewswire)

Energy drinks can’t carry alertness health claims
The EU Commission plans to allow claims that sugary drinks and energy drinks containing caffeine boost “alertness” or “concentration” have been vetoed by the European Parliament. It is thought that displaying these claims on drinks cans would have led to higher sugar consumption among adolescents, who are the largest group of energy drink consumers.  Lead MEP Christel Schaldemose (S&D, DK) states: "From statistics we know that many young people and even children are drinking a lot of these energy drinks, so it's not just the caffeine, it's also that energy drinks contain a lot of sugar too. And we don't think that these sorts of drinks should have any kind of health claims put on them.  We're not going to say that adults should not drink coffee or energy drinks. We just don't want to [help companies] to earn a lot of money on a health claim that we think is not suited for young kids".

Is pasta fattening?  Not according to Italian scientists
It has often been thought that pasta is fattening.  However, a study by Italian scientists has found pasta consumption to be associated with a small decrease in body mass index and does not contribute to obesity.  Pasta is reported to be a traditional component of the Mediterranean diet (MeD) although its consumption has been decreasing in Italy, as low-carbohydrate, high protein diets have proved popular in the fight against obesity.  According to epidemiological and clinical evidence the MeD has a protective role on overweight and obesity but the scientists note that little is known about the specific role of a basic component such as pasta.  The study published in the journal Nutrition and Diabetes, examined over 23,000 people recruited in two large epidemiological studies: Moli-sani and INHES (Italian Nutrition & Health Survey).   The participants involved in the Moli-sani were asked to complete medical and dietary questionnaires, whilst the INHES study collected dietary habit information from participants using a telephone-based survey.  The study found that “As a traditional component of MeD, pasta consumption was negatively associated with BMI, waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratio and with a lower prevalence of overweight and obesity.”

RSSL endeavours to check the veracity of news stories cited in this free e-mail bulletin by referring to the primary source, but cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies in the articles so published. RSSL provides links to other World Wide Web sites as a convenience to users, but cannot be held responsible for the content or availability of these sites. This document may be copied and distributed provided the source is cited as RSSL's Food e-News and the information so distributed is not used for profit.

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RSSL endeavours to check the veracity of news stories cited in this free e-mail bulletin by referring to the primary source, but cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies in the articles so published. RSSL provides links to other World Wide Web sites as a convenience to users, but cannot be held responsible for the content or availability of these sites. This document may be copied and distributed provided the source is cited as RSSL's Food e-News and the information so distributed is not used for profit.

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