During this year’s IFT FIRST expo in Chicago from July 16–19, Beneo is launching barley beta-glucans that reportedly offer unique health benefits including positive impacts on heart health and blood sugar management.  The new product, Orafti® β-Fit (a natural and clean label wholegrain barley flour with 20% beta-glucans) is an extension of the company’s functional fiber product range, locally produced in the U.S. and offered by Beneo worldwide. 

According to the company, Orafti β-Fit is on-trend with consumer focus on sustainability with plant-based and wholegrain ingredients being preferences when making their food choices. As a more affordable solution in the beta-glucans category, it is intended to offer additional value for both, manufacturers and consumers alike. Beneo will be highlighting Orafti β-Fit in Booth S2210 where visitors can sample heart-healthy waffles served with various toppings. 

Consumers are increasingly aware of how diet impacts both short and long-term wellbeing thus there is a growing demand for healthier food and beverage options. Half of U.S. consumers are extremely or very concerned about heart health issues while one in five people are personally affected by issues like cholesterol or hypertension. Functional ingredients such as barley beta-glucans, with proven health benefits and approved health claims, offer food manufacturers an easy way to create appealing products with convincing front-of-pack communication and a convenient way for consumers to choose nutritional products that positively impact heart health.

“Beneo is excited to be extending its functional fiber range with the launch of Orafti β-Fit. This wholegrain and clean label barley flour strengthens BENEO’s expertise as a leading provider of functional fibers,” says Jon Peters, Beneo’s sales director for the Americas. “Orafti β-Fit is perfectly aligned with the company’s goal to connect nutrition and health. It delivers convincing benefits with FDA-approved health claims. Orafti β-Fit, as an economically attractive solution, supports food manufacturers in developing tasty and appealing products with added value in times of tighter consumer budgets. As this is Beneo’s first ingredient that is fully produced in the U.S., IFT is the perfect platform to launch and present this product.”

Beta-glucans are viscous and soluble dietary fibers that make food thicker and thereby delay its passage through the large and small intestines. Several human intervention studies back up their health benefits, but only cereal beta-glucans have approved health claims in the U.S. and in Europe. In fact, beta-glucans from barley contribute to blood sugar management and cardiovascular health. They lower the blood glucose response and in both the short and long-term the blood cholesterol levels which are linked to reduced risk for coronary heart disease. These health effects of cereal beta-glucans have been shown in more than 120 scientific studies and have been recognized by official bodies such as FDA, Health Canada, EFSA, and other national authorities with the approval of corresponding health claims.

Beneo’s Orafti β-Fit also reportedly allows for fiber enrichment, thus helping to bridge the fiber gap. It can be used in a wide range of applications including baked goods (such as cakes, muffins, bread, and biscuits), pasta, cereals, and meal replacements. It can also positively impact texture by increasing viscosity, e.g., in dairy (alternatives).

In keeping with Beneo’s commitment to sustainable business practices, Orafti® β-Fit is produced with the use of the entire kernel. There is no waste in production and a 100% valorization of raw material, with no water resources needed.