Carmit Targets Global Gluten-Free Market with Luscious Chocolate Clusters

Carmit Candy Industries launches a new line of gluten-free chocolate clusters for healthy indulgence at Natural Products Expo West, Anaheim, March 7-9, booth #571. The new line will be available in multiple international markets.

“Our new line of gluten-free clusters targets both the mainstream market and the specific niches of people suffering from Celiac Disease/Gluten Intolerance and those following a gluten-free lifestyle,” explains Steve Grun, CEO of Carmit. “This has been a strong focus for Carmit over the past decade.”

Global confectionery launches with a “gluten-free” positioning increased by 46% in 2013 from 2012, according to Innova Database. While this indicates significant growth in gluten-free claims, gluten-free product-launch activity is still relatively niche for confectionery. Only 7% of confectionery product launches tracked in 2013 filled such positioning.

A cluster is a snack, based on a blend of ingredients that does not have a structured or consistent shape. The gluten-free clusters line includes a wide range of combinations of gluten-free cereals and dried fruits or nuts, and is covered in either chocolate or yogurt. The clusters can be custom packed in different sizes and shapes as private-label for marketers, restaurant chains and retailers, and for on-the-go packages or a multi-pack. All are designed to address a healthy, gluten-free lifestyle.

“We launched the line regionally and gained rapid success in food chains and health-food stores, culminating in our winning the prestigious ‘Product of the Year Award’ this week,” enthuses Adrian Sagman, VP of Export Marketing and Sales for Carmit.

A significant industry challenge is in how to blend cereals such as cornflakes and rice puffs with nuts and/or dry fruits, and bind them with 70% chocolate in a way that the inclusions are not dominated by the chocolate and maintain overall great taste and texture. To achieve this, Carmit conducted a number of trials to hit the perfect balance in percentage of each ingredient and viscosity of the chocolate. The final product is a remarkably rich, bite-sized cluster of crispy cereals and chewy dried fruits, covered in milk or dark chocolate.

Nestlè challenge Mondelez on not-melting chocolate

It was November 2012 when Cadbury (a Mondelez owned company) filed a patent for its not-melting chocolate.

The patent said that:

“It is believed that less temperature tolerant chocolates tend to comprise a more fat continuous system where the sugar particles are coated in fat. We have found that it is possible to instill more favorable temperature tolerant properties into a conched chocolate by refining the conched chocolate after the conching step. Without being bound by theoretical considerations it is believed that this leads to shearing of sugar particles in the conched chocolate leading to exposed faces of the sugar particles, i.e. faces which are not coated in fat. Such exposed sugar particle faces contribute towards a more sugar continuous system (sugar matrix) reducing the percentage of fat coated sugar particles which is believed to be advantageous for temperature tolerant properties.”

Nestec, Nestlè R&D center, on the other hand has developed its hot tolerant chocolate by adding little or no sugar to the chocolate core and instead adding the humectant liquids to a “tropicalized shell” for the product.

The patent was filed in December, but it is public only from the last week.

The core could melt at high temperature, but the shell will resist and the product will maintain its shape until 45 °C.

Different methods, but the same goal for both the companies: to conquer emerging and huge markets like Brazil and India.

There is only one problem: it’s almost from the time of the World War II that companies are trying to develop such a product, but the taste never satisfied the consumers! Kraft have tried to develop a similar product some years ago, but they failed and left the run.

Hershey’s Tropical Ration or K bar, was the first example of not melting chocolate, but as said by Colonel Pual Logan (one of the inventors) it tasted just “a little better than a boiled potato”. Furthermore, and what if your chocolate doesn’t melt in your mouth?

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