The Myvatex Spread Control emulsifiers taps into the need for trans-fat alternatives and, according to Euromonitor, the $26bn global market for spreads is being driven by functional spreadable oils and fats. There has been an inexorable move towards wellness and health. Consumers are far more aware about the amount of fat in their food, and trans-fats is an issue that has increasingly been hitting the headlines of late. The UK's Institute of Food Science & Technology recently published an updated information statement on trans fatty acids, which are present in partly hydrogenated fats as well as in animal fats (including milk fat and dairy products). The publication confirms the growing scientific consensus that trans fatty acids (TFAs) are unhealthy and is likely to put further pressure on the food industry to cut out trans fats wherever possible. To enable manufacturers to produce a wide variety of trans-fat-free dairy spreads, ranging from low fat margarines and spreads (35-40 per cent fat), mainstream margarine (80 per cent fat) and medium fat spreads (60 per cent fat), Kerry engineered the emulsifiers to solve three key challenges facing food technologists: maintaining emulsion processability; maintaining stability in use especially at refrigeration temperatures; and assuring organoleptic appeal of the finished product. The emulsifier system is also reported to be applicable to several formulations of spreads with a fat content as low as 25 per cent, said the company. "Myvatex Spread Control combines saturated and unsaturated lipids, including monoglycerides (fatty acid monoesters of glycerol) into a unique emulsifying formulation. Suitable for vegetarian, halal and kosher consumers, it carries the familiar declaration of E471 (mono and diglycerides of fatty acids)," said Neil Bourke, dairy applications specialist of Kerry Bio-Science. "It is supplied as an easy-to-use spray cooled powder, permitting swift and accurate weighing and application to the melting vessel," he added. "Myvatex Spread Control is a true innovation," said Karl Burkitt, strategic marketing director of Kerry Bio-Science. "And it is particularly relevant to manufacturers of functional spreadable oils and fats - the fastest-growing sector in the $26billion global market1 for spreads." In Europe, Denmark has been leading the way in trans-fat removal from food. The Scandinavian country introduced legislation in 2004 that required locally and imported foods to contain less than two per cent industrially made TFAs, a move that effectively abolished the use of partially hydrogenated vegetable oils in the country. Other countries are now following suit with New York's City Board of Health banning trans-fats from restaurants in December 2006.