Welcome to our May issue, we’ll explore a wide range of fascinating topics that are shaping the way we produce, package, and consume food, and providing new opportunities for growth and success. 

Food safety is a crucial foundation of our industry, and the SPAR Group has identified the need to support small and micro supplier development with a solution that not only strengthens and educates suppliers around food safety but empowers them to utilise this knowledge for business growth.  

Food fraud continues to be a pressing concern, and we have some practical content from Karen Constable with her take on the food fraud trends to watch out for. Local food fraud experts, FACTS, add to this with insights on the risks industry is facing and the message that now is not the time to take your eye off those risks, despite the other critical issues shouting for attention. 

The demand for functional ingredients is on the rise, and we look at the significant benefits around the use of spore-forming probiotics. We will also discuss the evolving needs in fibre formulation and present solutions that can help you optimize the nutritional profile of your products.

Clean label ingredients are gaining traction as consumers demanding transparency and natural ingredients in their food choices, so we look at the concept of clean label and showcase some innovative ingredients that meet this growing demand.

The convenience of instant beverages makes them more popular than ever. Powdered ingredients are likely to continue their growth curve, bringing a boost to the sports drinks and hot beverages market. We explore the market appetite and some of the formulation issues that need to be tackled in the production of these soluble beverage products.

Dairy-Free hot beverages have their own set of challenges, but exciting advances in chickpea-based milk has produced a coffee creamer that can accurately recreate the flavour, texture, and nutritional values of dairy milk analogues.

Still within the plant-based sector we look at pea protein and its exciting applications in various food products. We explore the issue of how the colour of plant-based meats is a key factor for the consumer, and how plant-based ingredients can mimic the colour shift that happens during cooking meat. 

In your Packaging & Processing Section

In this edition we will unpack precision process control solutions that enable monitoring and control of food production processes to ensure consistent quality and efficiency.

Innovative automation is transforming packaging processes, optimizing efficiency, reducing waste, and enhancing food safety. We’ll showcase the latest advancements in automation and how they are revolutionizing the sector.

Food labelling plays a critical role in product success, so we touch on some practical applications to consider when reviewing and optimizing your product labels to ensure compliance, accuracy, and effective communication with consumers.

We also look at the topic of contract manufacturers and the benefit this collaboration offers in enhancing production capabilities and expanding market reach.

And with sustainability and safety ever top of mind, we bring you some guidance on choosing the right bulk packaging solutions, based on the type of food product, the storage and transportation conditions, and the environmental impact. We’ll delve into the best practices, materials, design considerations and solutions available for the South African market.

We hope that this edition provides you with valuable insights and inspires further exploration of these exciting topics. As always, we welcome your feedback and encourage you to share your thoughts and experiences within the industry.