A product development resource for formulating foods with nutritionally superior, natural egg ingredients.



eggsaminer

Fall Issue 2016

Plentiful Egg Supply Breaks Open Market Potential

Egg IngredientsAn ample supply of eggs and egg ingredients in all forms, including shell eggs and further processed forms such as liquid, dried or frozen eggs, is available to food processing firms, manufacturers and foodservice establishments. The egg industry worked diligently to recover from the impact it suffered due to the unprecedented avian influenza (AI) outbreak in 2015.

Part of this early resurgence in egg supply is due to egg facilities that remained free of AI during the contamination period. Certain unaffected locations were able to expand and grow their flocks. In fact, the number of layers could exceed pre-AI levels by the end of the year and this surge in young, healthy birds also means more eggs.

The egg industry has implemented new practices as the result of the intense study and scrutiny devoted to the causes and prevention of AI, and the biosecurity safeguards and measures recommended by industry experts. The new safeguards are designed to help ensure the protection of a healthy and viable egg industry, to help stabilize the egg supply now and in the future.

The egg industry also possesses a remarkable safety record when it comes to egg ingredients. All further processed egg products designed for use as ingredients are pasteurized. During the past 45 years, not a single recorded instance of salmonellosis has been detected among further processed eggs pasteurized for food ingredient use.

“Now is the perfect time to take advantage of egg functionality and egg protein power,” said John Howeth, senior vice president, foodservice and egg product marketing. The International Food Information Council Foundation’s 2016 Food and Health Survey reported 64 percent of consumers said they are trying to consume more protein, up from 54 percent in the 2015 survey.

The protein composition of egg products is responsible for many of the functional properties they supply to manufacturers. For example, liquid egg whites at approximately 80 percent protein can aid with binding, whipping, aeration, foaming and structure. The dried form of liquid egg whites contains an even more concentrated amount of protein. Overall egg ingredients supply more than twenty functional properties within formulation, and the abundant supply makes it the right time to take advantage of REAL eggs.

The American Egg Board recently posted a new, searchable online version of the Egg Product Buyers’ Guide. The intuitive system is searchable by company, product type or distribution region, designed to help companies find the best source for the specific type of egg product needed. For more information, view the Buyers’ Guide.


Elimination Yields to Informed Choices

Egg SaladNowadays, a complete meal includes a side of cell phone with a dab of research. A Food Trends Report issued by Google this year analyzed search data and pinpointed five major trends that impact American eating habits. This search analysis related to food provides a glimpse into the consumer mindset that can benefit food product developers. One major trend highlights the rise of “functional foods.”

The search analysis found that consumers are looking for foods linked to certain physiological benefits. According to the report, searches for the term “best foods for” has grown ten times since 2005, accompanied by words such as “skin,” “energy,” “your brain,” “gym workout” and the like.

While much of the recent press related to clean label foods focuses on ingredients that formulators are eliminating, this focus on “best foods for” shifts the discussion from elimination to addition—which ingredients or foods are consumers seeking to add to their eating regimen?

One nutritional element of foods consumers are seeking is protein, according to views expressed in the annual International Food Information Council Food and Health Survey. A majority or 64 percent of Americans reported they were trying to consume more protein, up from 54 percent last year. This highlights the opportunities to incorporate egg ingredients into formulations or precooked eggs into meals or snack packs.

One egg contains six grams of easily digestible, high-quality protein for just 70 calories. Multiple studies link protein to satiety that aids in weight loss or recommend protein for recovery after a gym workout. In addition to protein, an egg plays host to a wealth of other vitamins and minerals.

Manufacturers can leverage the information provided by these types of studies by including ingredients within foods that supply good nutrition and by communicating this openly to the buying public. However, when communicating, manufacturers need to ensure that information fits all viewing formats—Google reports that more than 50 percent of searches are conducted on a mobile device.

1 https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/articles/2016-food-trends-google.html
2 http://www.foodinsight.org/articles/2016-food-and-health-survey-food-decision-2016-impact-growing-national-food-dialogue


New Ruling Qualifies Hard-Boiled Eggs as Healthy Snacks for Schools

Hard Boiled EggEggs, specifically hard-boiled eggs, qualify as an option for healthy snacks and á la carte offerings in schools, according to the final guidelines issued recently by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service under its Smart Snacks Rule1. In a change from earlier renditions of the rule, this final rule exempts whole eggs from limits on both total fat and saturated fat.

Drawing on recommendations from the Institute of Medicine and existing voluntary standards already implemented by thousands of schools around the country, this rule carefully balances science-based nutrition guidelines with practical and flexible solutions to promote healthier eating in schools. In fact, the final rule’s preamble specifically cites the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans2 that identifies eggs as “nutrient dense” and includes eggs in its recommended healthy eating patterns. Schools can include hard-cooked or hard-boiled eggs as snacks or menu items, as long as no fat has been added to them.

One large egg contains varying amounts of 13 essential vitamins and minerals plus six grams of protein for just 70 calories, leading to its designation as a nutrient dense food.

Starting with school year 2014-2015, the Smart Snacks ruling mandated the types of food sold at schools, during the school day, meet certain nutrition standards. This Smart Snacks in School regulation applies to foods sold a la carte, in the school store and in vending machines. The ruling is designed to encourage children to make healthier snack choices that give them the nutrition they need to grow and learn, and conforms to the provisions of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

“A satisfying meal or snack that includes protein can help support healthier student populations,” said John Howeth, senior vice president, foodservice and egg product marketing. “The inclusion of hard-boiled eggs in the ruling allows schools to use a nutrient dense food with plenty of creative options that will both please and nourish students.”

1 http://www.fns.usda.gov/healthierschoolday/tools-schools-focusing-smart-snacks
2 https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/


Egg Ingredient Spotlight:
Whole Eggs’ Functionality in Baking

The baking sector encompasses a wide variety of formats, from bread and rolls to pastries and desserts. In fact, pastry sales are rising with experts having estimated the cake sector to grow three percent in 2015. Euromonitor estimates the total baked goods market internationally at $339 billion in sales.

Chocolate Mousse CakeHistorically, baked goods rely on a few simple ingredients. Depending on the finished product the list often includes flour, sugar, eggs, butter or shortening, milk or water, leaveners and flavoring. From that list, whole eggs can contribute multiple functional and organoleptic properties to the vast majority of baked goods, such as cakes.

Liquid whole eggs are approximately 74 percent moisture and contribute moisture to cake batter. In addition, while flour helps build cake structure, eggs are almost equally as important to a cake’s structure. The proteins within eggs when physically mixed and heated unfold or denature. The proteins then form a cross-linked network to hold in gases, creating a relatively stable foam of tiny air bubbles, which help create the crumb structure in the baked cake.

Carotenoids in the yolk contribute to the golden brown crust or exterior and for a yellow cake, the color of the cake interior. In addition, eggs act as an emulsifier in the complex oil in water emulsion phase of cake mixing, supporting cake texture and eating quality.

Whole eggs aid with flavor development in cakes, without lending any strong or off-putting flavors themselves. Whole eggs, especially the fat in the yolk, act as an effective flavor carrier to allow fat-soluble flavoring ingredients, such as vanilla extract, more prominence. Whole eggs also help interfere with starch retrogradation to prevent or delay staling. And the natural lipids in egg yolks and whole eggs help create a moist, supple eating quality.

For whole eggs in baked goods, obviously one or more functional benefits carry greater prominence depending on the format of the baked good. For example, in cheesecake, with flour completely or primarily absent, that style of confection relies principally upon eggs for its structure, with their coagulative properties supporting the rich, dense cheese filling. For more information about egg functionality within baking or other types of applications, view the Tech Talk videos.


Protein Snacks Packs: A Hard-Boiled Story

Protein Snack PacksSavory characters can have their ‘sweet’ spots and hard-boiled eggs are no exception. The growing popularity of protein snack packs led to a new consumer survey conducted by Datassential, revealing that hard-boiled eggs could play the hero in snack pack concepts that attract consumer interest and spark purchase intent. Researchers tested product concept to determine the type of hard-boiled egg pairings and packaging that were most appealing., The research also zeroed in on key characteristics of protein snack purchasers and identified purchasing triggers.

Frequency

Nearly 80% of protein pack buyers purchase them at least monthly. Furthermore, 41 percent overall purchase these types of protein boxes at least weekly, with that share varying widely by brand. Lunchables are purchased most often however retail outlets don’t have a lock on protein pack potential, with those surveyed reporting that Starbucks protein packs are also popular.

Dayparts

While Lunchables might top the charts for protein pack sales, purchase intent is not tied to a specific daypart. Breakfast, dinner and snack time all serve as the right time for protein pack enjoyment. Most consumers in fact, say they purchase a protein pack as a snack (64 percent), while 59 percent said purchase intent is tied to the lunch/dinner segment and 52 percent say they purchase protein packs for breakfast.

Descriptors

Half of all consumers believe that the word “pack” best describes a protein snack option, with approximately one-third or 29 percent favoring the word “kit,” while “box” came in third.

Survey respondents said they would be most interested in and likely to buy hard-boiled eggs as snacks if they came in portable packaging, with the addition of flavor and more prominent nutritional benefit communication on package labels. Also, consumers seem to prefer their proteins paired together, citing preferences in combo packs for hard-boiled eggs to be paired with meat, cheese, nuts or fruit.

Savory’s Sweet Spot

The company tested a few hard-boiled egg snack pack concepts, including packaging and label designs, with the consumer groups. Among prototypes tested, the two that scored the highest included a two-egg protein snack pack including seasoning, and a three-compartment “protein power” snack box that featured a hard-boiled egg, cheese and roasted edamame. These two concepts among those tested, exhibited the highest earnings potential, scoring well for factors including high purchase intent, uniqueness, frequency and draw.

This combination of high purchase intent and a high uniqueness is considered the “sweet spot” for new product concept development. For more specifics concerning product concept development and the survey results from Datassential, contact Elisa Maloberti by calling (847) 296-7043 or email her at . An online Egg Product Buyers’ Guide lists producers that distribute pre-cooked hard-boiled eggs and other precooked egg products. View the Buyers’ Guide.



Egg Product Innovations

Ready Pac Bacon Baby Spinach Salad Kit with Grilled Chicken

Ready Pac Bistro continues to expand its line of single-serve salads that combine greens with “premium protein ingredients” from a variety of meats, cheese, hard-boiled eggs or a combination. One of the latest introductions delivers 12 grams of protein per serving, from a salad composed of baby spinach, microwaveable grilled white meat chicken, hard-boiled eggs, Monterey Jack-Colby Cheese and bacon with a sweet onion Dijon vinaigrette.


Great Value Big Burly Breakfast Sandwich Sausage, Egg and Cheese on Cinnamon Swirl French Toast

The Great Value line of breakfast sandwiches at Wal-Mart feature fried eggs with a variety of breakfast meats and cheese topping cinnamon swirl French toast. This version of their breakfast sandwich weighs in at a half pound made with savory sausage and a fried egg topped with American cheese and cinnamon butter, nestled between slices of swirled French toast. Each sandwich is microwaveable and retails in a 16.62-oz pack with two individually wrapped sandwiches. Each sandwich delivers 25 grams of protein.


RP’s Pasta Company Fresh Gluten-Free Spinach Fettuccine Pasta

The pasta’s creator was said to find inspiration while traveling in Italy, resulting in a product said to have the wonderful texture and flavor of traditional artisan fresh pasta. Product claims include gluten-free, GMO-free and low/no/reduced allergen. The gluten-free flour mixture includes brown rice flour and potato and tapioca starch. Eggs and egg whites contribute binding properties and aid with texture. Each refrigerated, 9-oz. package contains three servings of pasta.


El Monterey Egg, Sausage & Cheese Quesadillas

Ruiz Foods, USA introduces a flavorful new handheld meal solution with its El Monterey Signature Egg, Sausage & Cheese Quesadillas. Each quesadilla is made with real scrambled eggs mixed with a blend of Monterey jack and Cheddar cheese, pork sausage and a touch of green chilies and spice, wrapped in a fresh baked tortilla. One package contains ten individually wrapped quesadillas, easy to heat in the microwave, to grab and eat on the go. One quesadilla contains 12 grams of protein for just 270 calories.



Upcoming Events and Educational Opportunities


IBIE 2016—REAL Eggs Demonstration Session

Mark your calendars for October 8-11, 2016 for the International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) in Las Vegas, Nevada. The American Egg Board is hosting an educational session and demonstration from 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM, Sunday, October 9th entitled, “REAL Eggs: Integral Role in Baking.” With eggs in abundant supply, bakers can discover how egg ingredients help create gold standard products while offering a broad range of effective functional attributes contributed by one, single ingredient. Visitors to booth #1332 can sample a variety of foods that highlight a few of the many functional benefits of egg ingredients, including chocolate almond biscotti, single-serve mousse cups and flourless chocolate cake.

New Online Egg Product Buyers’ Guide

The newest version of the Egg Product Buyers’ Guide is available and more user friendly than ever. Available online, the Buyers’ Guide enables purchasers to search for the right supplier according to the most important parameters, whether that is product or type. The online nature of the guide also allows for the information to be updated more quickly, so users can count on finding the most current information regarding egg product suppliers. Start using the Egg Product Buyers’ Guide.




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