ISM Cologne 2023: The potential of healthy start-ups in snacking and confectionery
25 Apr 2023 --- As part of the ISM trade fair, a mix of burgeoning companies started within the last five years are presenting their innovative products and concepts in the Start-up Area and also pitching their products on stage.
FoodIngredientsFirst examines some of these burgeoning businesses. We spoke to Brain Foods, QISU and Haldy Plus Nutrition about their product launches on the show floor.
Brain Foods, from Bulgaria, won first prize in the ISM start-up pitch event, winning market research for the best start-up in the confectionary and snack industry. The brand specializes in vegan, “guilt-free” snacking products that are sugar and gluten-free and high in fiber.
When starting the company in 2020, the founders conducted research that showed “vegans miss milk chocolate even more than cheese,” explains Maria Veselinova, marketing and sales manager at Brain Foods.
The company created a milky chocolate-tasting vegan chocolate, which it incorporates into its wafers and oat bites. Veselinova adds that each product uses “90% less sugar compared to other products in the category and we don’t use palm oil.”
Veselinova hopes that the healthy snacking category will become more recognizable and that “people will start thinking more about their health but not with a lack of pleasure with trying new products.”
Newly founded company QISU, from Spain, launched its cheese snacks and toppings made from 100% cheese at the trade show. The company’s founder and manager, Javier Manrique, first came up with the product when he noticed a lack of affordable, dried and nutritious products on the market.
QISU dries Gouda, Edam and Spanish cheese into crispy cheese snacks. Manrique adds that retailers were interested in a cheese product that did not need refrigeration. He notes that “a big challenge for retailers is the cold chain,” which is expensive and offers limited space.
He adds that the snacks are high in protein and calcium while gluten-free. The products come in bags of 25 or 50 grams.
QISU is looking for distributors and retailers in Germany and Spain and plans to sell its products through its e-commerce platform.
Power of turmeric in mints
Haldy Plus Nutrition from Singapore is also launching peppermint, berries and lemon-flavored sugar-free mints based on turmeric in a “better for you” range. “It’s a tasty, refreshing and convenient way to have turmeric in your system,” says Push Sharma, the company’s CEO and founder.
He adds that he wanted to find an easier way to incorporate turmeric into his daily diet, to utilize the botanical’s known health benefits in immune and general well-being support. An R&D team helped with the product’s formulation.
Sharma notes the company is production-ready, “we’re just waiting for the right partners to partner with.” He aims to expand the company’s global presence and launch new products.
By Jolanda van Hal, reporting live from ISM and ProSweets in Cologne, Germany
This feature is provided by NutritionInsight’s sister website, FoodIngredientsFirst.
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