Coated Foods: Open Innovation and Strategic Cooperation

On 17 & 18 June 2009, Bridge2Food organized a Coated Foods Seminar in Bakel, the Netherlands together with CFS. This two-day seminar saw the building of new bridges, as retailers, food manufacturers, ingredient companies and equipment manufacturers reached fresh cooperative agreements.

Open innovation
The Coated Foods Seminar hosted by equipment and packaging materials manufacturer CFS was an ideal platform for open innovation and the launch of strategic cooperation on taste, texture, and processing challenges in the coated foods sector. These challenges are often too big for a single link in the chain and can only be met if several links work together, such as an equipment manufacturer, various ingredient companies, a coated foods manufacturer, and perhaps even a retailer. Designing better-tasting low-fat or no-fat coated foods is just one such challenge.

Less fat and superior product appearance
“There are loads of opportunities for healthy coated foods and snacks,” said Lu-Ann Williams, Head of Research with Innova Market Insights. The most important trends in the coated foods category are natural, wholegrain, the use of vegetables and cheese, and whole muscle products, including sustainability. As Paul Verbruggen, Product Manager with CFS added: “We are keen on further cooperation with the retail, manufacturing and ingredients industries to take our innovative no-fry technology to the next level.” During the seminar, the potential of no-fry technology was demonstrated by an example of coated chicken based on an innovation by key ingredients supplier Griffith.

During the no-fry process products go through a three zone cooking process. In the first zone, the product is steamed. Then, hot air impingement is used to obtain a crispy texture. Products are cooked to the required core temperature in the third zone. Uwe Rosenbaum, Food Industry Business Development Manager with Air Products, displayed how cryo-freezing technology can produce superior product quality and appearance. Market demand for Air Products technologies and services is soaring despite the current economic crisis. Ann Callens, European Food & Cryo Business Manager with Air Products, said “the lease and rent option for our cryo-freezer systems is an important driver for innovative companies: fewer investments, the ability to make quick line adjustments, and superior product quality makes leasing an interesting option for frozen food manufacturers.”

Clean label and reduced salt
Meneba showcased innovations using all natural ingredients and no artificial additives (free of E numbers) in coated cheese products, chicken nuggets, onion rings, and filled pockets. According to Gerard van der Hoek, Product Manager with Meneba, it is possible to produce high-quality products with a clean label using their range of heat-treated and pre-gelatinised flours.

Salt reduction is another important theme in the coated foods industry. Again, there are good options to choose from. Kees den Uijl, Business Development Manager with leading herbs and spices supplier Euroma, showcased new and tasty product solutions with 30% less salt on the CFS pilot line. “To achieve this substantial salt reduction of 30% or more without compromising taste, we will need to cooperate closely with the manufacturer. This yields the best results.”

Model for investment and operation efficiency analysis
Enrique Freire, General Manager with Cabomar Congelados S.A. in Spain lauded CFS on its work with the Value Model, part of the CFS Life Cycle Performance philosophy. “This model is very interesting as it is the first time that I have seen a machinery supplier approaching the client’s challenges in this way. Since reducing costs and speeding up return on investment are the main criteria for a manufacturer who is considering making an investment, this new approach could help both client and supplier to find the best equipment solution for the clients’ needs.”

For more information on the Coated Foods Seminar and a complete overview of the speakers and topics covered, see Or contact:

Irene Kraak
Bridge2Food Conference & Communications Manager
Jan van Eijcklaan 2| 3723 BC Bilthoven| The Netherlands| Phone: +31 30 225 2060|
Fax: +31 84 832 7225| M: +31 6416 83102| Skype: Bridge2Food|
E: [email protected]| I:

Bridge2Food is a knowledge and network agency based in The Netherlands. Its key strength is the development of specific platforms for the food industry: ‘Building bridges between food professionals’. Bridge2Food is operating in the international food sector. Bridge2Food facilitates international food networks such as the International Food Business Network (IFBN) tailored to food business managers and the Global Protein Network (GPN) for research managers with an interest in food proteins. Bridge2Food also organizes a wide range of food industry conferences for senior managers of food manufacturing companies in Europe, the USA and Asia. News and innovations are covered in our quarterly in2food e-Magazine.

Upcoming events:
- Dutch Food Market Opportunities, 3 & 4 November 2009, Amsterdam (Netherlands). This meeting is part of the International Food Business Network (IFBN).
- Sport & Performance Nutrition, 19 & 20 November 2009, Frankfurt (Germany). You can combine this meeting with a visit to the FoodIngredients Europe exhibition, also in Frankfurt, 17 – 19 November.
- 3rd Healthy & Nutritional Bars Conference, 3 & 4 November 2010, Cologne (Germany). Combine this meeting with a visit to the ISM 2010 also in Cologne, 31 January – 3 February 2010.

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