Isegen quality leads to growth

2008-06-12 00:00

South Africa’s only manufacturer of food acidulants, Isegen, has expanded its cold water soluble (CWS) fumaric acid capacity at its Isipingo, Durban site at a cost of R3,4 million.

The new plant recently came on stream. The expansion is due to increased demand locally and overseas for fumaric acid. The company’s food acidulants, such as malic acid, fumaric acid and fruitaric acid, are exported to 50 countries worldwide. The new plant will be using the tried and tested technology developed in South Africa in the 1970s.

“The increase in demand is attributed to Isegen’s quality consistency and reliability in the face of an ever growing list of problems related to quality and trustworthiness of some food acidulants emanating from the Far East,” explained MD Robert Fowlds.

According to food technologists and food manufacturing companies, he added, CWS fumaric acid is an excellent food acidulant.

Normal fumaric acid, known as hot water soluble (HWS), unfortunately suffers from a slow dissolution rate in ambient water. Although it is satisfactory when used in products such as jellies, canned foods, and jams, where the processing involves higher temperatures, it is not ideal for use in dry powder beverages.

“Isegen has overcome this problem by manufacturing a CWS grade of fumaric acid, which dissolves rapidly in cold water that can be used in dry powder beverages with great success.

“Fumaric acid is the most powerful of the food acidulants where savings of up to 40% can be achieved compared to the quantity of citric acid that would be required to achieve similar results,” said Fowlds.

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