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2014 Food Innovation Award

2014 Food Innovation Award


 Food Development Centre

Seabuckthorn Puree is a product the Food Development Centre developed from idea to market-ready for Solberry Inc. The puree is a single ingredient Canadian functional food and was launched in August 2011. It received the 2012 Best New Food Product Award (Small Business category) from the Manitoba Food Processors Association, as well, in the same year it was the first prize winner in the Innovate Manitoba competition.

The innovation of the Seabuckthorn Puree highly noteworthy for a number of reasons. Seabuckthorn Puree is a shelf-stable puree consisting solely of the seabuckthorn berry pulp that delivers known health and nutritional benefits in a convenient and versatile form for use in beverages, snacks, bakery, sauces, desserts and salad dressings an innovation never before available on the Canadian market. As well, the product is innovative in its harvest method of picking from frozen state versus fresh pick, and postharvest handling and storage of the berries to minimize the nutrient loss and preserve quality before processing into the puree.

The technical development of the product and process took approximately two years and involved product developers, process engineers, pilot plant technicians, and identification of new test parameters to achieve a finished product that consists of a nutritional profile as close to the berry itself as possible. The development, which included many trials, involved intensive work in the areas of sensory, pulp extraction, seed separation processes, nutritional composition, shelf life and stability and equipment suitability for manufacture.

The introduction of the puree to the market has sparked a considerable interest and demand among consumers in Manitoba, Canada as a whole, and across the border, thereby increasing demand for the berries, which continues to rise. In fact the number of seabuckthorn growers in Manitoba and Canada has increased two fold since the launch, resulting in a positive impact on the economy. Solberry Inc. is constantly getting great feedback from their customers and more and more orders are placed.

More recently, the Food Development Centre assisted Solberry Inc. to find more applications for the berry and has developed a seabuckthorn loose tea, dried seabuckthorn bits, a nutritional bar and a ready-to-drink beverage. The tea was launched in 2012, whereas the other products will be launched in the near future. With the goal of minimizing waste, product development efforts are focused on utilizing the whole seabuckthorn berry and the leaves, while using the by-product seeds for oil and protein extraction.

Now a leader in the international seabuckhorn community, the Food Development Centre helps to advance processing knowledge of seabuckhorn by regularly taking part and contributing to knowledge exchange, which in turn has helped the industry grow.

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        This page was last updated on 2014-08-27 4:52:42 PM