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Functional candy means sweet-toothed consumers can eat to their stomach's content

German firms Beneo-Palatinit and Bosch Confectionery are set to jointly unveil what they claim is a tooth-friendly chewy candy that doesn't have digestive side-effects.

The companies will present the innovation — a fudge product — at the 'Smart and Healthy Sweets Symposium' in September, which is being organised by German college Zentralfachschule der Deutschen Süsswarenindustrie (ZDS) in Solingen.

Functional carbohydrates specialist Beneo-Palatinit and candy manufacturer Bosch Confectionery worked in close co-operation to develop the product, which contains the sugar replacement ingredient Palatinose rather than polyols.

Palatinose, which is also known as isomaltulose, is a disaccharide produced exclusively from pure beet sugar. It is said to be the first tooth-friendly sugar approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. It is already used in tooth-friendly chocolate and beverages, but until now has not been incorporated into chewy candy products.

Beneo and Bosch are poised to take advantage of the growing market for sugar free and functional candy. According to a 2008 Global Industry Analyst report on the healthy confectionary market, "the candy market is undergoing a radical shift from sugar-based to low-carb and diet products." The dramatic change in healthy candy product development is targeted toward health-minded consumers and parents who want sweets without the unhealthy side effects of tooth decay and extra calories.

One of the downsides to sugar-free candy is digestive trouble. Beneo-Palatinit said that because Palatinose was fully digestible, it had been able to address negative digestive side-effects that can sometimes result when using some other functional sugar replacers.

The ZDS Symposium, which takes place 29-30 September, is a meeting point for international confectionery manufacturers wanting to find out more about latest industry trends.

Head of customer technical service at Beneo-Palatinit Ingrid Willibald-Ettle, who will be present at the show, said: "Worldwide, the average consumer is becoming more health conscious and in the future we anticipate great demand for such confectionery products — particularly from consumers wishing to combine indulgence and health."

For the Global Industry Analyst report, click here.

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