Egg replacement could be answer to soaring prices

Confectionery makers are faced with increasing price volatility

A range of protein hydrolysates is being touted as the ideal replacement to egg albumin in the wake of market price increases.

Made from both dairy and vegetable sources, Hyfoama offers “exceptionally consistent” whipping performance and removes the risk of fluctuating egg prices, its maker Kerry Group claimed.

It is also used at a lower inclusion rate than egg white, which results in a cost-in-use reduction of 15–25% compared with egg albumen, depending on usage levels and application.

In January, data analyst Mintec revealed that the latest avian (bird) flu outbreak, together with rising consumer demand for protein, had led to a 16% increase in egg prices in just two months.

Detected in 14 European countries

The H5N8 strain of bird flu reached Europe in October 2016, and since then, it has been detected in at least 14 European countries.

In parallel, more and more European consumers are looking to increase their protein intake and view eggs as an important source to provide this protein, Kerry suggests.

The UK recorded the steepest rise in egg sales in November 2016, since World War II rationing ended in the 1950s, Mintec said.

Price and supply volatility

This price and supply volatility represented a major headache for manufacturers, which use egg as a key ingredient in the confectionery, bakery and beverage categories, the ingredients firm claimed.

Typical confectionery applications for Hyfoama include nougat, marshmallow, jellies and chews.

The range also includes allergen-free and vegan options, both of which are growing in the sugar confectionery market.

Last month, 23,000 birds were culled on a farm in Suffolk, following a positive bird flu test. The birds, at Banham Poultry, were destroyed in accordance with EU legislation.

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