Nutrition and healthy living are top-of-mind for more consumers now than ever before. The purchasing behaviour is increasingly being influenced by health, taste and convenience considerations. So, it is not a surprise that, for daily vitamin supplementation, the gummy format as a delivery method is quickly becoming a favourite because of the sensorial and enjoyable experience, particularly for consumers with compromised ability to swallow, or those who already have high pill burden.
However, gummy vitamins can contain quite a bit of sugar, anywhere from two to eight grams. And gummies are normally made with gelatine, a gelling agent derived from connective tissues of animals. These may not be suitable for different customer groups interested in products that help them live healthier and longer lives and those that align with their values and beliefs.
Health-conscious consumers or vegetarians, for example, are seeking plant-based products. As a result, manufacturers are moving from gelatin-based to plant-derived versions.
While it’s already harder to make a gelatine gummy than it is to make a tablet, it is even a lot harder to make a vegetarian gummy with no or low amounts of sugar.
A vegetarian solution
Enter pectin—a vegetarian alternative to gelatine. Pectin comes entirely from natural citrus or apples. Due to this, the gelling agent as such has a good flavour and therefore doesn’t require other ingredients to mask the taste. In addition, pectin generally creates a fast release of flavours, and pectin gummies have a softer chew and more tender bite than gelatine gummies. All these characteristics support the consumer’s wish for good taste and sensory delight.
But pectin is tricky to handle while making the gummy. Getting the temperature and the solution right is important to ensure a proper gelation. A delicate balance needs to be established to ensure that the supplements are not harmed during the manufacturing process.
Moisture also plays a key role in the texture and taste of nutraceutical gummies. Sugar precipitates the gelation of pectin, which ensures the binding of water in the gummy. So can you achieve optimal moisture properties if you’re making a sugar-free gummy?
Innovating to remove sugar
Sirio Pharma Co., Ltd (SIRIO) is a pioneer in developing vegetarian products, including gummies. The R&D team of SIRIO, a leading CDMO specialised in nutraceuticals, recently developed a method to make sugar-free pectin gummies.
SIRIO uses erythritol, a sweetener, for moisture control. Erythritol is practically calorie free and has no effect on blood sugar and insulin levels, making this gummy an ideal food supplement also for diabetics.
The specialists at SIRIO carefully select the ingredients for vitamins and minerals in the gummies, based on guidelines of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
Non-sugar and vegetarian gummies can be developed containing many vitamins and minerals, covering a broad range of health benefits.
Recently, SIRIO developed a vegetarian gummy that contains vitamins A, B, C, D and E, as well as the minerals of iodine, zinc and selenium.
Based on EFSA authorised claims, this product can strengthen immune system and vitality; maintain healthy skin, teeth and bones; and support eye and brain health. Besides being suited for adults, the vegetarian sugar-free gummy is likewise beneficial for diabetic consumers and children. Recommended daily dose is one gummy for children and two gummies for adults.
Founded in 1993, SIRIO is a leading global nutraceutical CDMO specialised in developing and manufacturing quality products, including softgel, capsule, tablet, gummy, oral liquid, probiotics, powder and other dosage forms. SIRIO holds over 15 certifications including BRC and TGA-GMP. Cooperating with many well-known nutraceutical companies, SIRIO is committed to providing products and service to customers globally.
SIRIO will be showcasing its range of products and formulations at Vitafoods Europe. Visit SIRIO at booth F104 to learn about innovative formulations, technologies and market-focused solutions to address consumers’ specific nutritional needs, as well as taste SIRIO’s gummy specialities.