Key Interview: TIC Gums Extends Guar Gum Capabilities

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12 Jun 2017 --- TIC Gums has released US-produced GuarNT USA to their portfolio. GuarNT USA is a highly versatile hydrocolloid that builds viscosity and controls water migration in a wide range of finished goods including ice cream, instant beverages, sauces, baked goods, fruit preparations and syrups. Because guar is considered a seed gum, derived from the seed of the guar plant, GuarNT USA abides by regularly used clean label parameters.

FoodIngredientsFirst caught up with Business Development Manager at TIC Gums, Tim Andon who discussed opportunities when using this ingredient. 

“We made a strategic decision to add to our existing line of guar gums manufactured at our plant in the US because we have seen a strong demand for locally sourced products that are also clean label. With many food safety regulations evolving and becoming stricter, producing here in the US makes it a lot easier for us and our customers to adhere to the more challenging aspects of FSMA. Among other things, being here in the US obviates any need for foreign supplier verification,” he explains. 

“Guar gum in itself is a sustainable product – give than it is naturally grown and it’s something that has been utilized in the food industry for years.”

“We continually hear from customers and consumers in regards to their concerns about the source of ingredients they are using whether from a food safety or clean label standpoint. To that end we are confident that expanding capacity of guar manufactured here in the US is going to help our customers address those concerns” Andon notes. 

Guar gum can be used in a variety of food applications to help provide viscosity and control water migration. GuarNT USA available from TIC Gums is manufactured in Belcamp, MD USA and gives customers an easily accessible location to audit. In addition to its functionality, food developers use this highly versatile ingredient because it fits clean label and non-GMO criteria by being minimally processed, as it comes directly from the seed of the guar plant.

GuarNT USA addresses two major FSMA (Food Safety Modernization Act) compliance hurdles associated with food safety: Foreign Supplier Verification Program and Preventive Controls.

Foreign Supplier Verification Program
GuarNT USA is manufactured and warehoused in an SQF Level 3 Facility in Belcamp, Maryland. Due to the domestic nature of both the manufacturing and warehousing location, GuarNT USA avoids Foreign Supplier Verification Program requirements.

Preventive Controls
TIC Gums has implemented a proprietary Validated Microbiological Kill Step as a preventive control which monitors and prevents identified hazards.

Additionally, TIC Gums conducts appropriate verification activities as required by FSMA to make sure the supply chain is secure and robust. Overall, customers can have peace of mind when sourcing GuarNT USA because TIC Gums takes responsibility for this product meeting all FDA requirements.

According to Andon, the process for manufacturing GuarNT USA includes a validated microbiological kill step that ensures preventive control is in place early in the supply chain. A validated kill step means that TIC Gums validates with scientific evidence from a 3rd-party lab that the applied preventive control is capable of effectively controlling and preventing an identified hazard for GuarNT USA. “Customers can be assured that ingredient meets FSMA requirements and ensures product safety,” he adds. 

For applications looking to avoid the common “beany” or “grassy” off-notes in both flavor and odor, TIC Gums also offers GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000. The Gum Gurus at TIC Gums have identified these “off notes” are predominantly caused by the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) hexanal & hexanoic acid, among others. TIC Gums ensures a significant reduction of volatile compounds that typically in GuarNT USA Flavor Free 5000 compared to standard guar gum.

Although there is a continued focus on clean label initiatives in the food industry, there is still a call for manufacturers to produce great tasting products with consistent shelf stability. Andon explains: “Guar is a critical component in food systems as it helps maintain textural integrity of products over the course of their shelf life.” 

“In ice cream, for example, it helps to establish a creamier mouth feel, reduce the ice crystal growth over time. When using our GuarNT Flavor Free 5000 you will have the added benefit of a stronger flavor release due to fewer organic volatiles from guar,” he adds. 

What applications could be most improved by utilizing these new guar gums? “Because guar itself is such a flexible ingredient it can be used by a variety of manufacturers,” notes Andon. “It can be used effectively in applications including ice cream, beverages, dressings and any other kind of food formats that need thickening, texturizing or some extra suspension.”

“Of course,” he continues, “If you are looking to reduce the number of ingredients or switch from alternative thickeners to something that is more natural or does have more of a clean label feel to its this product is going to perform very well.” 

Can we expect any further developments off the back of this? “We are definitely looking at what else we can do with this equipment such as coming up with different specialty grades of guar materials to continue to capitalize on its natural halo,” he says. “Moving forward, we have a lot of ideas for our R&D team to develop so we are certainly looking to expand the product portfolio in the future,” he finalizes, “I’m certain you will see more from us in terms of innovation.”

by Elizabeth Green

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