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underPRESSURE: pressure for healthier and clean(er) food labels

25 Jul 2019



Consumers are increasingly demanding healthier products and more natural foods. Solely reducing the level of ingredients like sugar, salt and fat in products often compromises taste and freshness. Puratos is always on the lookout for new solutions that contribute to both the healthiness of baked goods and a clean(er) label without any compromise to the taste. For that reason, Puratos has become one of the partners in an EIT Food project called underPRESSURE.


underPRESSURE: exploring new possibilities for fat-based products with less fat

underPRESSURE is an innovation project within EIT Food. Five companies partner up in this project that aims to scale up a new technology (by project partner Ypsicon) based on ultra-high pressure homogenisation. Dr Bram Pareyt, Research Manager for Proteins at Puratos: “The project explores the possibilities of using this technology to produce fat-based products like sauces by using less fat and without replacing them with additives. It also studies non-fat based products or products that already have a low fat content, like some of our patisserie ingredients, and how their typical quality aspects can be obtained by reducing additives. This contributes to a cleaner label with more natural ingredients.”


Tasty and ‘clean’ answers to the increased demand for low-fat products

With around 50% of the European population being overweight, the demand for fat-reduced products increases and consumers’ awareness on the topic is growing. In emulsions like sauces and creams fat reduction is achieved by substituting fat with fat replacers. But most of these are E-numbers and show up in the ingredients list, which goes against the consumer’s demand for a clean label. Moreover, products with fat replacers are considered less tasty. The underPRESSURE project explores the possibilities of using this new technology to create tasty, stable and safe foods: foods with a fat reduction of more than 30% and a clean(er) label than their full-fat counterparts, but with the same or even better sensory characteristics and industry demands like extended shelf life.


The importance of this project for Puratos

“Puratos is always focussing on innovation, differentiation and cost reduction in order to help our customers grow their business. In everything we do, we highly value the nutritional aspect. The underPRESSURE project is closely connected to Puratos’ Health & Well-being programme and even more so to our Clean(er) Label efforts. This project can contribute to the global demand for clean(er) label and naturalness. We already offer low-fat solutions. So in this project, we focus on finding ways to further shorten the ingredients list. How can we make emulsions with using emulsifiers? This project gives us the opportunity to find possibilities to develop new products with natural ingredients and a clean(er) label.”

Meeting consumer expectations

To ensure that products made in accordance with the new technology meet consumer demands, consumers are actively engaged in the project. “This is done by conducting a survey among 1000 consumers in 6 countries, in which both consumer expectations about the products (including key drivers for purchase) as well as product perception (opinion about the product, acceptable price, etc.) are investigated.”


High pressure homogenisation: a promising technology

The underPRESSURE project was initially set up for one year (January - December 2019). “This we are testing low-viscosity products on a pilot scale, and high-viscosity products (sauces, creams) on a smaller (laboratory) scale. As the technology appears to be highly promising, we are already considering extending it by another year to investigate even more possibilities after Ypsicon will have scaled up the technology for high-viscosity products as well.”


Innovating to meet customer and consumer demands is of paramount importance to Puratos. Are you curious about the other future-proof innovations Puratos has been working on recently? Learn more about how we tapped into new, sustainable sources of proteins to secure our future food supply. Or discover how new food concepts were created by using retail food losses.