8 Jun 2021
Freshness is the number 1 criterion for consumers when buying bread, followed by taste. 57% of consumers agree that freshness is the most important property when buying bread, 53% of consumers agree that taste is the second most important property when buying bread. Bakers know that the perfect soft, fresh texture in bread is an art to master, and science to perfect. In truth, every generation wants to develop and improve their baking skills by trying new techniques and different ingredients. This innovative spirit is clear when you think about the crackle and endless texture variety available in today’s moist, soft and short bite bread. And yet as consumers’ demand for clean(er) label increases, the job of perfecting your bread’s texture – with fewer ingredients – becomes increasingly precise work. Stay informed as to what’s required to perfect your bread’s softness, and how you can achieve that ultimate long-lasting softness that will benefit your business.
It’s a fact of life that your bread’s texture starts the inevitable cycle of ‘staling’ a few seconds after you’ve baked it; it’s the beginning of its slow loss of freshness. To overcome this, it’s helpful to truly understand the causes of this staling. Two things are going on … on the one hand, moisture is being redistributed. Essentially, moisture from the crumb migrates into the much drier crust, making it chewier. And on the other, staling is the reorganization of the starch after baking … this is the so-called retrogradation.
Retrogradation is the process of starch trying to return to its original state. As the bread cools, the starch begins to recrystallize after it is gelatinized in the heat of the oven. This process ultimately leads to a loss of softness and moistness and the crumbling of the crumb. The fundamental question of how to delay this staling process, and achieve longer-lasting softness has preoccupied bakers forever.
Consumers do not use the same terminology as the sensorial experts, but instinctively recognize high-quality freshness and a dry, crumbling crumb. Many senses play a role here: smell, sight, and touch. Our Taste survey confirms that Freshness remains the number 1 purchase decision criterion for consumers when Tomorrow buying bread. Having a premium quality softness helps you to tap into new markets. Quite literally, a longer shelf life allows you to extend your distribution and reduce the levels of waste at the point of sales.
At Puratos, we pay attention to every detail in bread texture and master the interaction between all the ingredients to perfect it.
With more major bakeries and food services starting to launch new ranges of rustic style burger buns and country-style toast bread, ‘soft rustic’ has become an increasingly interesting market too. Many of these soft rustic buns and toast bread, with spongy crumb and thin crust, typically come with sourdough, longer fermentation, and higher hydration doughs. In short, they push everyday soft bread to the next level, increasing margins for bakers and making artisan-style bread available to more consumers. It is especially in this more premium segment that consumers want clean(er) label bread, without compromising on texture and shelf life. Taste Tomorrow research shows that 60% of consumers are averse to additives in food.
Just like every wine variety ages differently, so does each type of bread. Sourdough bread for example ‘ages relatively well due to its typically higher hydration recipe, which gives a lighter, more open crumb structure. Other breads, like everyday lean bread, typically become stale more quickly, as they do not contain fats and sugars that can help slow down staling. With this extra complexity, and every type of bread requiring a different bite, optimizing texture is a science that demands work and understanding.
Consumers do not use the same terminology as the sensorial experts, but nevertheless instinctively recognize high-quality freshness and a dry, crumbling crumb. Many senses play a role here: smell, sight, and touch. Our Taste Tomorrow survey confirms that Freshness remains the number 1 purchase decision criterion for consumers when buying bread. Having a premium quality softness helps you to tap into new markets. Quite literally, as a longer shelf life allows you to extend your distribution and reduce the levels of waste in the point of sales.
For centuries enzymes have been naturally part of bread, since naturally present in flour. But it was only in the 19th century that people first discovered enzymes and their importance in bread making. Built upon the curiosity of the passionate bakers before us, Puratos builds further on the past with enzyme-based innovations inspired by nature. Using the latest research and fermentation technologies we help bakers to perfect texture and freshness.
Enzymes are proteins produced by fermentation and are present in any living organism. Inspired by nature, and based on these enzymes, clean(er) label improvers and mixes can help you to create shorter and clearer ingredient lists for baked goods whilst also achieving the right texture. Our latest innovation, Intens Soft & Fine was developed with a unique enzyme. It gives initial softness and a longer-lasting softness during shelf life when used to produce an extensive range of soft bakery items. It is the perfect clean(er) label alternative to monoglycerides (labeled as E471 in Europe) and full-fat soy flour and other lipases. It also helps to diminish the exposure to the cost and price fluctuations of emulsifiers.
Incorporating whole grains in your bread is a powerful way of developing your bread’s texture experience. To guarantee the ultimate softness in every bite we have a range of Specialty Grains that are either soaked in sourdough wholegrains & seeds or sprouted & fermented wholegrains. Both are full of juicy goodness, and slowly release their moistness into your bread’s crumb, extending its shelf life and adding additional long-lasting flavor.
Discover our bakery solutions today!