The coronavirus pandemic has made many consumers more aware of their dietary habits and the affect they have on health. As a result, interest in eating healthy is top-of-mind for many as they shop for food. This includes looking for products with lower sodium amounts to meet dietary recommendations and to improve cardiovascular health.
Even prior to the pandemic, consumer interest in healthy eating was on the rise. According to a 2018 report, 44% of adults aged 18 to 24 said they actively seek products that will improve their health.
Most food product categories are affected in some way by sodium levels: snacks, dressings & sauces, baked goods to name a few. Because salt plays many roles in food, reducing levels in any product can create formulation challenges.
Yeast extract is a natural ingredient derived from fresh yeast through a simple production process. It provides a solution for manufacturers looking to offer products that meet both the increased consumer demand for healthy products and their desire for tasty food. According to a 2018 consumer survey, 39% of consumers consider taste to be an important factor when purchasing food products. Another 21% consider a healthy symbol on product packaging to be a key decision factor.
By using just a little bit of yeast extract, manufacturers and producers can reduce their product sodium levels (up to 30% in some cases) while still offering rich, savory tasting products. In addition, amongst the many benefits of using yeast extract, it’s clean label, a term consumers often associate with healthier foods. Yeast extract is also vegan and vegetarian friendly and certified Halal and Kosher by recognized organizations, increasing the range and scope of products it can be used in.
When all is said and done, yeast extract offers food manufacturers a natural ingredient that allows for sodium reduction without compromising on flavor.