New flavor enhancer naturally amplifies umami

by Jeff Gelski
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CHICAGO — Kikkoman Sales USA, Inc. has introduced a natural flavor enhancer to amplify savory umami flavor. The enhancer gives a simple label advantage to savory applications and may be used in place of MSG (monosodium glutamate), HVP (hydrolyzed vegetable protein) or yeast extracts. San Francisco-based Kikkoman Sales USA promoted the enhancer during I.F.T. 10, the Institute of Food Technologists’ annual meeting and food exposition held in Chicago July 18-20.

Potential applications include meat, poultry, seafood, soups, dressings, marinades, dry mixes and seasoning blends. The flavor enhancer may allow formulators to use 10% to 30% less sodium when compared to traditionally brewed soy sauce.

The natural flavor enhancer involves Kikkoman soy sauce, wheat, soybeans, water and salt. Fermentation liberates numerous acids responsible for umami, which includes high levels of glutamic acid. A proprietary brewing process reduces typical soy sauce flavor, aroma and color to create a neutral savory flavor booster. The enhancer is available in both liquid and powdered versions.
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