Natural Beta Carotene, A Color That You Don’t Want To Miss!
BRING LIGHT INTO YOUR PRODUCTS WITH BETA CAROTENE
In the spectrum of natural food colouring between pale yellow and bright orange stands the very popular beta carotene colour. With a neutral taste profile and a clear finish, beta carotene is a favourite among food colour manufacturers because it can instantly brighten the look of any food product and make it more appealing to the eye. Natural beta carotene has been formulated with antioxidants that help the pigment to retain its intensity throughout its shelf life. It is also an oil soluble and heat stable food colour that can withstand intensive thermal processing, including pasteurisation methods like Ultra High Temperature (UHT) processing and High Temperature, Short Time (HTST) pasteurisation or heating applications in baking or preparation of confectionery.
WHERE IS BETA CAROTENE FOUND?
Beta carotene can be found in a number of commonly seen sources. Some examples are algae, fruits, orange carrots and oil palm fruits. Depending on its concentration, the colour of the pigment can range from yellow to orange. The name beta carotene itself comes from the word carrot and denotes the rich hues of carrots.
Natural beta carotene has a crystal clear yellow colour due to its unique formulation with a carefully selected group of ingredients followed by a high-pressure homogenisation to improve transparency.
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APPLICATIONS OF NATURAL BETA CAROTENE
As we know, beta carotene is a natural food component that is available in fruits and vegetables such as carrot, spinach, sweet potato, pumpkin, broccoli, peppers, pink grapefruit, papaya and peach. However, food colour manufacturers also produce it to be used as a food colourant or as a supplement. The health beneficial properties of natural beta carotene also make it a useful food colour that is popular among food product manufacturers and is often seen on the labels of food products. An important source of Vitamin A, it is often added to food to combat Vitamin A deficiency. Since increased intake of natural beta carotene has been associated with increased risk for lung cancer in at-risk individuals (heavy smokers, asbestos workers and alcohol users), the consumption of beta carotene must be regulated and monitored.
Some common ways in which natural beta carotene is used include:
- As a supplier of Vitamin A, which is a precursor used by the body in the production of Retinol, which in turn helps to maintain good eye health.
- As part of drinks like energy drinks, vitamin and mineral drinks, soft carbonated drinks as part of rehydration and sports nutrition.
- In confectionery, in the making of hard boiled candy and clear sweets. The colour and transparency of natural beta carotene also adds to the appeal of the sweets and makes one want to purchase them.
- As a part of sauces, seasoning and glazes that are used while cooking or to add a final finish to the cooked food.
- In bakeries where the food colour is used in fillings and toppings of cakes, creams and icing.
As dairy and vegan alternatives for cheeses, butter, spreads, and milk-based beverages.
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