The United States Department of Agriculture forecasted in July that food prices will continue to increase in the second half of 2023 with the industry looking at a 2.8% percent increase in 2024. As a result, food company executives are exploring additional ways to widen their already slim margins.
Many food companies are investing research dollars to see how product ingredients can be used more efficiently. U.S. Soy – led by U.S. soy farmers – is working with food companies to ensure their frying oil delivers on both product performance and consumer needs, making your dollar stretch further to help the bottom line. One potential product solution is high oleic soybean oil, the latest innovation from the U.S. soy industry, developed in partnership with food companies.
“Using a high performing ingredient, like high oleic soybean oil, brings health, culinary versatility, and streamlined operations to chefs’ kitchens. It’s a win-win-win: Not only can its neutral flavor be a canvas for flavor, but using this oil also reduces wear-and-tear on frying equipment. I recommend high oleic soybean oil to many CPG and foodservice professionals that are looking to optimize their menus for health and operations.” — Rosalyn Darling, Principal Innovation Chef at Darling Culinary, LLC and Strategic Consulting Partner for the Culinary Institute of America
U.S. grown high oleic soybean oil extends products’ shelf life, offers among the longest fry life of any edible oil, features an improved, healthy fat profile and provides a neutral flavor that allows your products to be the star of the show.
“As a farmer, our job is to feed America. Working in partnership with food companies allows everyone to do their jobs better. We can grow exactly what a company needs for their products, helping them drive sales which ripples throughout the value chain.” — Belinda Burrier, U.S. Soybean Farmer
Saving Money Through Extended Fry Life
Functionality testing confirmed that high oleic soybean oil offers one of the longest fry life of any edible oil, which translates into reduced product costs as well as labor and operational savings.
Superior fry life means that even after 24 hours of frying, in tests comparing high oleic soybean oil to traditional soybean or canola oil, high oleic soybean oil left less than 5% polymerization on the equipment. Polymerization makes it more difficult to clean the frying equipment as well as the walls, counter tops and floor area around the fryer. High oleic soybean oil’s superior oxidative stability cuts down on this build-up.
Fryer cleaning can be a huge expense for an operation. It often requires extended downtime to cool and clean the equipment. Reduced polymerization means longer productive frying time, and less labor time and chemicals needed for cleaning fryers.
“High oleic soybean oil, due to its high level of monounsaturated fat, is far superior in oxidative stability compared to the traditional liquid oils used in frying. This high stability equates to longer frying life without sacrificing the flavor or appearance of the fried food. Extending the fry life results in a lower oil cost on a per pound basis, helps with lower operating cost since the fryer runs longer with less downtime for oil change overs and fryer maintenance.” — Dennis Strayer, U.S. Soy Consultant
Reducing Waste by Extending Shelf Life
Improving fry life is not the only way high oleic soybean oil can save operators money. The high-performance oil can also extend a product’s shelf life.
A six-month shelf stability and sensory study of oils compared high oleic soybean oil against other commercially available commodity oils. The results indicated that products sprayed with high oleic soybean oil were slower to develop the detection of oil rancidity, while noticeable rancid notes developed quicker in products treated with other oils, including canola oil.
As supply chains continue to recover to pre pandemic speed, ensuring a long product life is essential for food manufacturers. A longer shelf-life results in less waste as well as lower transportation costs.
Guaranteeing Supply in Advance
High oleic soybeans are exclusively grown in the U.S. ensuring a secure domestic supply chain. U.S. soy farmers are partnering with crushers and refiners across the country to expand availability of high oleic soybean oil as quickly as possible.
“Since its initial introduction in 2015, high oleic soybean oil usage has increased each year as it has become a major premium frying oil alternative for the food industry. The high oleic soybean variety is being grown throughout the U.S. farming region and major oilseed processors and vegetable oil suppliers are providing the liquid oil to the food service and food manufactures in railcar, tank wagon, and package volumes in the frying industry. Its superior oxidative stability and U.S. farming origination, with domestic supply line, will ensure that high oleic soybean oil will continue to grow as one of the dominate frying oil options for the food service and food manufacturing operations.” — Dennis Strayer, U.S. Soy Consultant
Did you know: 78% of consumers said supporting domestic agriculture by buying foods produced with crops grown by U.S. farmers is important.
Food companies are encouraged to reach out to their oil suppliers now to secure their oil for 2024-2025. If you are ready to start this conversation, reach out to a U.S. Soy representative who can help connect with you with a high oleic soybean oil supplier.
In addition to expanding the availability of high oleic soybean oil, U.S. Soy continues to partner with the food industry to create soybean products with increased functionality. Scientists are currently working on a soybean variety that produces increased omega-3s, which will increase the existing heart healthy benefits of soybean oil.
Stay in the loop on the latest functionality testing and soybean trait development by signing up for the U.S. Soy industry newsletter at food.ussoy.org/stay-informed.