Gil Horsky is head of global innovation at Mondelez International, the world’s biggest chocolate, confectionery and biscuit company.
He spoke of the different kinds of innovation that are set to shake up the category in the coming years.
“Before the food industry wasn’t big on tech, before it was consumer driven than pure research and development, but this is going to change.
“We’ll see more experts coming other industries – such as biotech and pharma – to food. Some of these scientists are attracted to the food industry because there is less regulation and a quicker time to market, you can simply move much faster."
Israeli firm Doux Matok is an example of this. It has taken technology from encapsulation and delivery that was traditionally used in the pharmaceutical industry for medicine – and is applying it to sugar reduction, said Horsky. It has developed a patented flavour delivery molecule that can cut sugar by 40%.
“We’ll see more open innovation and partnerships with scientists outside the industry.”
Horsky also spoke of snacking companies tapping into wider trends that lie outside the confectionery industry from mindfulness (a Belgian firm that has developed a chocolate you can inhale through the nose for another way to experience the flavour) to the desire for personalisation (3D printed chocolate selfies).
“Every food category has one region or geography where the most innovative future trends show up first. In chocolate, it’s the Nordic and Scandinavian countries that are five years ahead. What shows up in Sweden, shows up later in Europe. Track this for your category.”