Seaweed success? Nestlé files patent on non-dairy liquid coffee creamers

By Kacey Culliney

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / ziggy1
© Getty Images / ziggy1
Nestlé has developed non-dairy coffee creamers with improved mouthfeel using a blend of red seaweed extracts and high oleic vegetable oils that have an extended shelf life of up to six months.

Writing in its international patent,​the food and beverage major said the creamer had a yogurt-like texture and could be stored at temperatures between 20°C and 38°C. Whilst initially developed for coffee, it said the creamers could also be added to tea, cocoa, cereals and a number of ready-to-drink beverages.

Overcoming 'drawbacks'

Nestlé said all previous attempts to improve texture or mouthfeel in liquid creamers had drawbacks, like phase separation during shelf life, poor pouring due to a high viscosity or drip back whilst pouring.

“The present invention now solves the foregoing problems by providing a stable beverage composition having enhanced or improved organoleptic properties,” ​it wrote. This had been achieved, it said, even with low levels of fat.

The company said it had developed a “novel hydrocolloid texturizing/stabilizing system”​ that ensured “excellent organoleptic properties” ​in the non-dairy liquid creamers.

Its blend incorporated two red seaweed extracts – kappa-carrageenan and iota-carrageenan – in combination with traditional guar gum.

“Advantageously and unexpectedly, a unique combination of the hydrocolloid texturizing/stabilizing system ingredients was found to improve beverage texture/mouthfeel and provide a pleasant, smooth, creamy taste when the creamer is added to coffee,”​ it wrote.

However, only low levels of the red seaweed extracts could be used. The ideal inclusion rates sat between 0.06-0.09 wt% for kappa-carrageenan and 0.05-0.11 wt% for iota-carrageenan.

For even better mouthfeel, Nestlé said high oleic vegetable oils, such as canola, soybean, sunflower, safflower or a combination thereof, had to also be incorporated at an inclusion rate of 10-16 wt%.

Good flavor, solid shelf life

Red seaweed © Getty Images Stephen Barnes
The patent concerns non-dairy coffee creamers produced from a red seaweed extracts and high oleic vegetable oils. Image © Getty Images / Stephen Barnes

Nestlé said the non-dairy creamers were easily dispersible in hot or cold products, without feathering, breaking emulsion, de-oiling, flocculation or sedimentation. Importantly, they maintained “good flavor”​ with “no off-flavor notes developed during storage time”.

The aseptic-packed creamers could be stored at 20°C for at least six months; 30°C for three months; and 38°C for one month, maintaining “good physio-chemical stability”​ during shelf life, it said.

Whilst the invention was primarily for coffee or tea creamers, Nestlé said they could also be added to a range of suitable liquids as they remained stable in hot and cold acidity. For example, ready-to-drink beverages for nutrition or medical purposes; yogurts; fruit juices; and even carbonated beverages.

In these instances, however, the creamer would require a buffer or stabilizing system containing at least one emulsifier such as sugar esters or monoglycerides, it said.

Source: WIPO International Patent No. 2019002031
Published: January 3, 2019. Filed: June 20, 2018.
Title: “Creamers with improved texture/mouthfeel and method of making thereof”
Author: Nestec S.A. - JR. Fu and A. Sher

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