Food & Beverage Asia Oct/Nov 2019

T he U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) is a non-profit, independent membership organization representing producers and suppliers of U.S. Dairy products such as whey ingredients, milk powders, lactose and cheese. USDEC serves as a resource for actionable U.S. dairy information for its members as well as global buyers and food and beverage industry end-users and stakeholders in order to support customer purchasing, usage and innovation success with quality U.S. dairy products and ingredients. Recently, USDEChosted aU.S. Dairy Protein Health & Fitness Innovation Seminar in Singapore on 27 th August 2019. The day- long seminar highlighted how U.S. dairy proteins are an advantageous nutritional and functional innovation solution aligned with wide-ranging consumer desires, from health and wellness to winning taste to adventurous and enjoyable ̭avor experiences. The event also highlighted the strengths of made-in-USA whey and milk proteins and how they support Southeast Asian manufacturers’ needs for convenient and proven ingredient solutions in local, friendly product applications. Speakers include product trends analyst Donna Berry as well as nutrition and dairy innovation experts Leslie Bonci and E r i c B a s t i a n , i n t r o d u c e d i d e a s and opportunities for the region's manufacturers to develop innovative new products with U.S. dairy ingredients. Invited participants included more than 100 R&D and management sta ̫ from food and beverage buyers and end-users from across South East Asia. Dairy protein use is convenient, such as protein-boosted healthy snacks like nutrition bars and bites. In the following paragraphs, Ms. Donna Berry, product trends specialist, and Ms. Leslie Bonci, nutrition and dairy innovation expert, share with Food and Beverage Asia about their views on the latest consumer trends and how the industry is continuously evolving. Ms. Donna Berry who is a certi̬ed Food Scientist, and also works as an editor, consultant and Food Guru at Dairy & Food Communications, Inc. She has been writing and speaking on product development, marketing and trends in the beverage, dairy, food and ingredient industries since 2001. Kindlywalkus throughyourbeginnings in the industry as a Food Scientist. What are you most passionate about in your work? Donna Berry (DB): I was fascinated with food and food science from a young age, and by tenth grade I had already mapped out what I wanted to do in order to achieve that – to go to the University of Illinois to get a degree in food science and to work for a large food company. And that is exactly what I did! After spending about three years in the food industry, I happened to meet the editor of a U.S. food trade magazine--Prepared Food-and she told me that Dairy Foods magazine had an opening for the role of a technical ingredient editor and recommended that I try it out and that’s how I transitioned from a food scientist into writing. I love seeing small players who have great ideas, and I love helping them and inspiring them. I want to give them the encouragement to go forward. This is what I’m passionate about. The beauty of the dairy industry is that I’m able to give them that consultation and experience and do so much more for them with my blend of food science and writing background. What are the consumer trends you foresee emerging in the market in the next few years to come? DB : The biggest one continues to be the no-added sugars and total sugars. Both go hand-in-hand. It’s interesting as there has been a lot of emphasis on reducing no- added sugars without saying that there are actually sugars. A lot of consumers forget about total sugars. In juice for example, there may not be any added sugars, but there are de̬nitely natural sugars in it. I also feel emphasis on proteins is going to continue as well. As far as trends go, I think it’s not changing too much. Howdo you think the food industry will deal with upcoming challenges? DB : For no-added sugars, for example, there continues to be a great deal of innovation in the stevia industry. Big companies are trying to make it less bitter and more economical. This will probably continue. The challenge is that From Shelf to Health: Personalisation for Consumers Ms. Donna Berry, product trends specialist and Ms. Leslie Bonci, nutrition and dairy innovation expert, share their thoughts on the latest consumer trends and how the industry is continuously evolving. FOOD & BEVERAGE ASIA OCTOBER / NOVEMBER 2019 ON THE TABLE 34 Ms. Donna Berry product trends specialist