Building on its strong market share in western Europe, claiming about a third of the market in over six European countries, the texturant system business unit has 'finely-tuned' the product range of seven, with a focus on price and organisation of categories, from gelling grades to baking stability.
Finding new ways of stimulating consumer demand and increasing convenience is vital to future growth for bakers placed in the low growth cake market.
Cake sales in the US have been stagnating for at least the last six years, according to a recent market report, while Europe appears to be going to same way.
UK cake sales were up by 9 per cent to £1.7 billion between 1999 and 2003, but this increase has little to do with surging demand - according to market analysts Mintel, the rise in value is linked to higher sales prices offsetting higher input costs.
A key advantage for the food maker of the Degussa range, says Eric Aubree, application service centre director at Degussa, is that a blend makes for an easier option for the food formulator.
"Instead of the customer buying the primary ingredients, alginates, salts et al, and then formulating them, our range offers a well-priced functional solution in a ready-to-use mix," he tells FoodNavigator.com.
The range, the Satiagel GBC and Satialgine GCF series, are rooted in the firm's 'home-produced' alginates and carrageenans, brown and red seaweed extracts respectively. A plant in Normandy, France has production capacity of 4000 tonnes for carrageenans while alginates are produced in a plant in Brittany, France, capable of churning out some 2500 tonnes.
The products, according to Degussa, offer: "Instant viscosity after preparation, evolution of texture as a function of time and firmness and baking stability".
Fine sucrose, pre-gelatinised starch, whole and skimmed milk powder and vanilla flavour are all included in the Degussa formulation.
Bakery cream is found in a wide range of cakes, including eclairs, mille-feuilles, cream puffs and cream buns. The product can also be used as pastry base for fruit tarts and with the addition of beaten egg white, it serves as a base for sweet-flavoured soufflés (vanilla, cocoa, alcoholic).
Other players vying for space on the bakery cream market include DSM and Puratos.