The North American company has its roots in supplying vitamins and minerals for supplements, but has used its patented Accent technology to fortify 7 g of chocolate or compound coating with up to 300 mg of calcium carbonate.
It is looking to partner with a major cocoa processor to bring high-load calcium chocolate to market.
‘Meaningful for consumers’
“Chocolate as a delivery system has been a bit of an untapped opportunity,” Jeff Billig, VP and general manager at Delavau Food Partners told ConfectioneryNews.
“Being able to add a glass of milk level to 7g of chocolate – that would be really meaningful for the consumer.”
He said 7 g of chocolate or compound coating would be enough to enrobe a wafer or snack bar, but manufacturers could also create a an entire chocolate bar with calcium fortified chocolate that would account for more of a person’s recommended daily allowance (RDA) for calcium – which is 1,000 mg for 19–50 year olds, according to the US Department of Health.
“Chocolate experts have been surprised how little sensory impact there’s been for such a high calcium load,” said Billig.
He claimed calcium fortification had little impact on taste, flavor and texture and said that by bringing calcium out of the base of bars and incorporating it into the chocolate or compound coating, manufacturers could bring more functional ingredients such as protein and fiber into the product base.
‘Possibilities for marketers’
Billig said there had been an influx of specialty chocolate and compound coatings to market in the past few years that were nutritionally enhanced with added fiber or protein.
“A technology that easily and cost effectively adds calcium to a mainstay confectionery item like chocolate creates new possibilities for marketers as consumer needs continue to evolve,” he said.
Research in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition from 2013 found many Americans, particularly from low-income households, were falling short of recommended calcium intakes.
Billig added that calcium chocolate could help meet the nutrient needs of those who cannot or choose to avoid dairy products.
Delavau says its high-load calcium chocolate would be considered non-GMO. The company’s Accent technology is based on the proper particle size and surface area to obtain the intended functionality.
“We are not adding anything to it. What we do is physical processing,” said Billig.
Delavau has performed tests with dark and milk chocolate as well as compound coatings and foresees no limitations.
Billig said calcium carbonate was added at the conching stage and the process required no adjustments to existing operations.
He said calcium carbonate directly replaces the chocolate formulation (cocoa mass and sugar) and could be cost neutral depending on the chocolate recipe.