SZECHUAN flavour, kimchi, adobo, and wasabi are a few Asian flavours that are enjoyed globally, but many more are trending because consumers are seeking new tastes in snacks, convenience foods, and beverages. In this interview Adrian Yee, Marketing Director, Asia Pacific, for Kalsec® Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, says the influences of these regional flavours have even gone outside the food and beverage space.
Adrian Yee, Marketing Director, Asia Pacific, for Kalsec® Asia Pacific Pte Ltd
A leading provider of sustainably produced spice and herb flavour extracts, as well as colours, antioxidants and advanced hop products in the region, Kalsec has developed some regional flavours as well such as tom yum, a variety of curry, and other heat intensities from ghost pepper and other ingredients.
What F&B trends will mostly impact your company’s plans for 2021?
Consumers and CPG brands alike are increasingly looking out to purchase from companies that have a focus on being sustainable. This is heightened by increased frequency and media featuring news, stories and documentary on climate change. In essence, people want to see brands put in a serious effort in their bid to try to help the planet.
In November last year, Kalsec announced it has reached a new milestone by passing a rigorous assessment to join only 3,500+ other organisations from around the world as a Certified B Corp. This is a highly selective process that measures a company in 5 key areas: community, environment, customers, governance and workplace excellence.
The B Corp certification holds deep meaning to Kalsec's owners and its employees because the philosophy and beliefs of Kalsec's founder Paul Todd and its culture today is embodied in the conditions that B Corp uses in its certification process.
This means our customers can have peace of mind that Kalsec meets the highest standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability. We are always making decisions that best serve our customers as well as the entire community by using our business as a force for good.
The second trend we are observing in Asia is the celebration of local cuisines. While the affinity of western cuisine remains, there has been an increasing proliferation of specialty Asian cuisine in and beyond the F&B scene.
One example is the Mala flavour that originated in Sichuan, China. “Mala” is composed of the Chinese characters “numbing” and “spicy”. A mala cuisine restaurant has become increasingly popular in both China and countries in Asia. As a number of Asian cuisines often incorporates pungent spices, it was only a matter of time that the mala concept finds itself in the rest of Asia. Today, the mala flavour has also found its way into snacks as well as instant noodles. Mala is the new honey to vloggers, many of whom have done food challenges with the mala flavour. That in turn has kicked it up yet another notch.
Kalsec is a pioneer in both the extraction of peppers and the use of gas chromatography for the analysis of spice extracts. Today, we have expanded that capability into a deep toolkit of heat management solutions that provides natural extracts to brands. A popular choice is ClearCap® Capsicum that provides distinctive heat with no colour.
As consumer trends evolve, and the desire for more specialised heat and peppers grow, Kalsec maintains its innovative research and development efforts to provide creative solutions to our customers’ challenges.
2020 has shown how industries and people have and will adapt their way about work, life and food consumption within the varied limitations and restrictions. The one thing that has manifested as a common challenge across many industries is supply chain. Kalsec's well established, broad and diversified supply chain has always been a distinct benefit to our existing and new customers and 2020 only amplified that.
We predict that customers and suppliers across industries will put a greater emphasis on ensuring that their supply chain strategy is more detailed and updated to ensure quality and on time delivery through any similar global events.
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