The combination of collaboration, focus and technical expertise were the key ingredients in this Co-Development project together with one of the biggest chocolate producers in Brazil.
Brazilian chocolate consumers are predominantly looking for products with a creamy, indulgent texture and a first-class appeal. Premium chocolates in Brazil are sold in specific stores at shopping malls with controlled temperature, having imported products as a market reference.
In general, Brazilian truffles are filled pralines, with chocolate shells and soft fillings. They are, in other words, quite different compared to the traditional European truffle recipe, where culinary vegetable cream is normally used in the fillings.
The challenge to substitute high trans-fats
The aim of this Co-Development project was to replace the high trans-fats (PHO) used together with the vegetable culinary cream and to improve the filling texture. Removing the culinary vegetable cream from the truffles’ filling provided the move from a water-based to a fat-based filling, which was a very interesting one. With this change, the truffles would both get a creamier texture and an improved shelf life, resulting in lower production costs and an even better sensory profile.
The customer in question aims to be among the largest chocolate companies in the world and using a fat-based filling in its products would open up for export opportunities given the improved shelf life. Since the customer had no experience with fat-based fillings, AAK’s South Latin American team shared technical information about formulations, fat compatibility and process details, explaining why the filling could recrystallize or present oil migration during its shelf life. Pictures and recipes were also shared, illustrating all the technical relevant points.
Improving creaminess in truffle fillings
What we offered to our customer was an Akospread™ NH solution, a versatile fat that can be used on its own or in combination with other fats, such as nut pastes, milk fat, cocoa butter, chocolate mass, and vegetable culinary cream. Application trials were performed at our Customer Innovation Center in Brazil, where we tested different spreads formulations to show the fat’s versatility and to demonstrate that the creamy texture was maintained during the product’s entire shelf life.
The customer started off by using our fat in two seasonal truffle flavors but their future ambition is to use it in all truffle fillings. The key collaborative activities were technical conversations, focused on formulation and process adjustments. By using Akospread™ NH, we improved the filling sensory profile, especially in regard to higher creaminess, longer shelf life, and allowing the customer to have a less complex formulation by using fewer ingredients – resulting, in the end, in a better solution. A win-win situation for our customer as well as for AAK.