VOL. 35 OCTOBER 2010
taste. It also works with Danisco for taste and texture
solutions. And, as part of Firmenich’s ModulaSenseb
program, Firmenich has formed a sweet-enhancement
partnership with Pure Circle for stevia. These enhance
the upfront sweetness of reduced sugar products, mask off
notes, and add body and mouthfeel to low-sugar products.
These and other technologies have been launched to support the health and well-being goals (e.g., reduced sugar,
salt and fat) with naturals.
“This is something that is opening a lot of new doors and
opportunities,” says Uva. “Access to scientific platforms
is something we will leverage more and more. We were
looking at taste modulation 10 years ago and now we are
commercializing it. The focus of this company is on long-term innovation. Taste modulation, applied to flavors, is
opening a new direction. It pushes flavors in a [health and
wellness] direction. They are adding value for consumers.
“Alliances among the partners and stakeholders will be
one of the key areas for the future,” he adds. “We need
to partner with those who can bring capabilities that we
do not have in order to produce something that is cost-effective and fully natural.” And so, he says, reinvestment
in research and understanding of the natural trend is
crucial. “This is the way in which you will separate flavor
houses that are likely to work in the commodity area of
our industry from flavor houses that invest in research and
innovation to build the products of the future.
“We’re investing a lot in research in understanding
how to create something that can deliver natural flavors
without only working with the concept that naturals can
only come directly from nature,” he adds. “In Europe the
regulation is only fast forwarding the process of finding
efficiencies, fast-forwarding the finding of alternatives to
what is sold today. It will have an impact on cost and, as
I said, if we don’t want to have an impact on the pockets
of consumers, we need to work to find efficiencies in the
overall system and processes.”
Drivers of the Flavor Industry’s Future
“The flavor industry has suffered like all the other indus-
tries in the crisis of the past two years,” says Uva, “but
out of all the other businesses, it is now benefiting from
a rebound of the overall economy. Things are starting to
Yet, he says, the industry is changing. “What is very
clear is that this industry is transforming from a pure
flavor industry to a much more product-concept industry.
The more you go toward health and wellness, the more
you realize that the flavor by itself is a very old concept.
You need to make sure the creation of flavors is always
attached to a benefit, to something that can really deliver
an added value to a product. Nutrition and health and
wellness will have a huge impact on those things. They
are applied to different platforms and different ages. For
example, nutrition, health and wellness for a teenager are
completely different from that for a senior citizen. The
way in which you have to deliver your flavor to add benefit
to different types of people is something that we really
need to take into consideration as it impacts our research,
our creation, our flavorists, our applications labs, every-
thing. If you look at a big CPG’s strategy you discover
there are a lot of dimensions in this platform, and we
need to make sure we follow what they do. The impact on
the way in which we create a flavor and apply a flavor to a
certain product will be affected.”
He adds, “So, today the customer is asking not just
for a flavor, but for some kind of distinctive innovation.
They really want breakthrough innovation, something
that can make their product completely different. This is
something that is pushing the trends today. This is where
investments in research pay off. To have an efficient
supply chain is clearly important, but to have state of
the art research and innovation is really important today.
These drivers are clearly changing the way in which we
bModulaSense is a trademark of Firmenich.