US based science company, LycoRed has developed the Tomat-O-Red line of lycopene colour variants to be used in various food and beverage applications in place of the insect-derived cochineal.
The new red colour variants provide a deeper red lycopene colour with blue backgrounds, similar to the shade of carmine, making them ideal for food manufacturers with vegetarian offerings.
“The increased demand from customers seeking to replace carmine encouraged us to extend our natural red colourants line and develop new formulations suitable for additional food applications, such as confectionary, dairy and beverages,” says Roee Nir, Global Commercial Manager of Colour for LycoRed.
“By adding more formulations, we can provide food and beverage developers with a variety of options, so they can, in turn, expand product offerings to their customers.
"Moreover, all of our natural food colourants are sustainable and produced in an ecofriendly process, ensuring our customers always receive the highest quality in the marketplace.”
The new colour formulations are available in liquid form and as well as being vegetarian, are free from any allergenic components listed in the USA’s Food Allergen Labelling and Consumer Protection Act (2004).
“The advantage of these new formulations is their high stability across a wide range of pH levels, light conditions, high temperatures and also in the presence of vitamin C,” said Nir.
“The drive to replace carmine is so intense, we had to develop natural colour solutions for a wide range of applications in a short period. Our researchers developed colour solutions that effectively match carmine shades and characteristics, while demonstrating the high stability parameters formulators seek.”
A recent report from Innova Market Insights on natural colours found that strong growth over the past four years of product launches utilizing natural colours demonstrates a strong trend towards natural and clean labelling.