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Title:
SUGAR REPLACEMENT COMPOSITION AND CHOCOLATE AND BAKERY PRODUCT COMPRISING THIS COMPOSITION
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/097069
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The present invention relates to a sugar replacement composition, which is based on a novel and innovative combination of ingredients such that the sugar replacement composition gives rise to one or more advantageous use characteristics of comparable or superior to those of sucrose, excellent organoleptic properties especially in chocolate, low calorie content (in certain embodiments 100 kcal/100 g or less), permits reduction of fat content of certain foods such as chocolate, as well as significant health benefits, including low glycemic index, low cariogenicity, and prebiotic properties supporting growth of advantageous intestinal bacteria, beneficial effects of lowering blood sugar and slowing down, the emptying of the stomach. The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention comprise polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin and high intensity sweetener. Uses of the sugar replacement composition for the manufacture of chocolate and other food products is also disclosed.

Inventors:
DE BAETS, Sophie (Dorpsstraat 182, 9980 Sint-Laureins, 9980, BE)
Application Number:
EP2015/080113
Publication Date:
June 23, 2016
Filing Date:
December 16, 2015
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
AEGIS NV (Antwerpsesteenweg 124, 2630 Aartselaar, 2630, BE)
International Classes:
A21D2/18; A21D2/36; A21D13/06; A23G1/40; A23L27/30; A23L29/219; A23L29/244; A23L33/26
Domestic Patent References:
2007-01-04
2012-11-22
2006-02-16
2015-10-22
Foreign References:
US20070082104A12007-04-12
US20110274813A12011-11-10
AU2012201398A12012-03-29
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BACHELIN, Martin et al. (Arabellastraße 30, Munich, Munich, 81925, DE)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims

1. Sugar replacement composition comprising polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin and high intensity sweetener, wherein the content of polydextrose is from more than 60 wt.% to less than 90 wt.%, the content of resistant maltodextrin is from 10 wt.% to less than 40 wt.%, and the content of high intensity sweetener is from more than 0% to 1 wt.%, wherein all wt.% indications are based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%, and wherein the sugar replacement composition is free of sugar alcohols.

2. Sugar replacement composition according to claim 1 , wherein the content of polydextrose is from. 62 wt.%* to less than 90 wt.% and wherein the content of resistant maltodextrin is from 1.0 wt.% to less than 38 wt.% , wherein all wt.% indications are based on the total, of the sugar replacement, composition, being 100 wt.%.

3. Sugar replacement composition according to claim 1 or 2, wherein, said sugar replacement composition, further comprises a fructan, wherein said fructan comprises one or more components selected from inulin, oligofructose and agavin and wherein, the total content of said fructan is from more than 0 wt.% to 30 wt.% and preferably from 10 to 25 wt.%, wherein, all wt.% indications are based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%.

4. Sugar replacement composition according to claim 3, wherein, said sugar replacement composition comprises from 5 wt.% to 15 wt.% of inulin, wherein the wt.% indication is based on the total, of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%.

5. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of claims 3 or 4, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises from 5 to 15 wt% of oligofructose, wherein the wt,% indication is based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%.

6. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding claims, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 62 wt.% to less than 75 wt%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 8 wt.% to 20 wt,%;

• oligofructose in an amount of 2.5 wt.% to 15 wt.%; and • inulin in an amount of 2,5 wt.% to 15 wt.%.

7. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding claims, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises;

• polydextrose in an amount of 62 wt.% to less than 70 wt.%;

resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 8 wt.% to 20 wt.%;

• oligofractose in an amount of 5 wt.% to 15 wt.%; and

inulin in an amount of 5 wt.% to 15 wt.%.

8. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding claims, which comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 63 wt.% to less than 68 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 12 wt.% to 18 wt.%;

oligofractose in an amount of 7 wt.% to 12.5 wt.%; and

inulin in an amount of 7 wt.% to 12.5 wt.%.

9. Sugar replacement composition, which comprises polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin, a high intensity sweetener, inulin and oligofractose one or more sugar alcohols selected from the group consisting of lactitol, isomalt,. and maltitol, and preferably isomalt in the following amounts;

polydextrose in an amount of 61 wt.% to 70 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 3 wt.% to 1 1 wt.%;

oligofractose in an amount of 0.5 wt.% to 6 wt.%;

inulin in an amount of 1 wt.% to 9 wt.%;

• lactitol, isomalt, and/or maltitol in an amount of 16 to 24 wt.%; and

• high intensity sweetener in an amount of more than 0 to 0.5 wt%

based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%, wherein the sugar replacement composition is free of sugar alcohols other than lactitol, isomalt, and maltitol.

10. Use of the sugar replacement compositions according to any one of the above claims 1 to 9 for the manufacture of chocolate, bakery products, frozen or non-frozen desserts, oghurts, jam, marmalade, beverages and whipped cream.

1 1. Method for manufacturing chocolate, which comprises the steps of providing ingredients comprising cocoa mass, cocoa butter or another source of fat, emulsifier and the sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the claims 1 to 9 above; mixing the above- mentioned ingredients in any order, conching at elevated temperature; and cooling the resulting mass,

12. Method for manufacturing chocolate according to the preceding claim 1 1 , wherein conching is performed in a temperature range of from. 40 to 90 °C and for a time period of from 60 to 720 min, preferably 180 to 300 min.

13. Method for manufacturing chocolate according to the preceding claim 11 or 12, which further comprises the step of grinding the ingredients.

14. Chocolate obtainable according to the method of anyone of the preceding claims 1 1 , 12 and 13.

15. Method for making bakery products, which comprises the steps of providing ingredients comprising flour, a source of fat, water, an emulsifier, a leavening agent and the ingredients of a sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the above claims 1 to 9; mixing the above ingredients in any order; heating the resulting dough; and cooling,

16. Bakery product obtainable according to the method of Claim 15,

Description:
SUGAR REPLACEMENT COMPOSITION AND CHOCOLATE AND BAKERY PRODUCT

COMPRISING THIS COMPOSITION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to sugar replacement compositions. It also relates to the use of the inventive sugar replacement compositions in the manufacture of chocolate. The chocolate manufactured in this way is another aspect of the present invention. The invention further pertains to the use of the inventive sugar replacement composition in other applications such as bakery products or frozen desserts.

2. Background of the Invention

Sugar is commonly used as an ingredient in various foods, beverages and related products such as chewing gums. However, due to its high caloric value and susceptibility for digestion by various bacteria, sugar has undesired detrimental effects on the consumer's health. Therefore, various efforts have been made to replace sugar by alternative sweetening agents or sweetening compositions in foods and beverages. Some of them are sweeteners such as the commercial product Splenda®, which primarily contain high intensity sweeteners like sucraiose. Some other sugar replacement compositions have been developed, which are primarily based, on polyols, polysaccharides and/or oligosaccharides and which may additionally contain, high intensity sweeteners. Such sugar replacement compositions are disclosed, for instance, in WO 2006/015880 Al .

However, commercial sweeteners like Splenda® cannot be used as a substitute for sugar in applications such as bakery products or ice cream, since the commercial sweetener does not provide the functional (e.g. stractural) characteristics of sugar. The manufacture of high quality chocolate imposes particularly high requirements for the Sweetener to ensure that the desired organoleptic properties of the chocolate are accomplished.

Sugar replacement compositions such as the compositions described in WO 2006/015880 Al may be used for replacing sugar also in bakery products and the like since such sugar replacement compositions also exhibit functional characteristics of sugar. However, these compositions are still unsatisfactory because they have a too high caloric value and because they are unsatisfactory in view of health considerations (glycemic index, tooth friendliness, etc.). Moreover, the compositions of WO 2006/015880 Al and other known sugar replacers suffer from the disadvantage that they rely on the use of sugar alcohols such as isomalt as a means for accomplishing advantageous organoleptic properties, e.g. in chocolate. However, there is a desire to avoid the use of such sugar alcohols since they are known to exhibit laxative effects when consumed in greater amounts. Moreover, some sugar alcohols such as erythritol exhibit a cooling effect when dissolved in the consumer's mouth, which is also undesirable. At present, there is no sugar-free chocolate on the market or known which does not rely on the use of sugar alcohols but nevertheless provides excellent organoleptic properties.

The present invention therefore has the objective of providing sugar replacement compositions and products like chocolate made from such compositions, which avoid the above detrimental effects and which exhibit, in particular, one or more of the following advantageous characteristics:

• low caloric value;

• low glycemic index;

• improved tooth friendliness;

• suitability for making chocolate with excellent organoleptic properties while allowing to avoid the use of sugar alcohols and negative effects associated therewith.

Of course, the sugar replacement composition of the present invention also provides such benefits for applications other than chocolate due to the absence of sugar alcohols and the resulting absence of laxative effects.

Further objectives and beneficial effects of the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention will become apparent from the following description of the present invention.

3. Summary' of the Invention

The above objective is accomplished on the basis of the surprising finding that the use of sugar alcohols can be avoided without detrimentally affecting organoleptic properties in chocolate and other products by using a combination of polydextrose and resistant maltodextrin, wherein the relative amounts of these two essential components are increased to relatively high levels. In particular, the above objective is accomplished by the subject-matter of the following numbered items:

1. Sugar replacement composition comprising polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin and high intensity sweetener as well as optional further components, wherein the content of polydextrose is from more than 60 wt.% to less than 90 wt.%, the content of resistant maltodextrin is from 5 to less than 40 wt.% and preferably 10 wt.% to less than 40 wt.%, and the content of high intensity sweetener is from more than 0% to 1 wt.%, wherein all wt.% indications are based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%, and wherein the sugar replacement composition is free of sugar alcohols.

2. Sugar replacement composition according to item 1 } wherein the content of polydextrose is from 62 wt.% to less than 90 wt.% and wherein the content of resistant maltodextrin is from 10 wt.% to less than 38 wt.% , wherein all wt.% indications are based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%,

3. Sugar replacement composition according to item 1 or 2, wherein said sugar replacement composition further comprises a fructan as a further component, wherein said fructan comprises one or more components selected from inulin, oligofractose and agavin and wherein, the total content of said fructan is from more than 0 wt.% to 30 wt.% and preferably from 10 to 25 wt.%, wherein all wt.% indications are based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%.

4. Sugar replacement composition according to item. 3, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises from 5 wt.% to 15 wt.% of inulin, wherein the wt.% indication is based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 1 0 wt.%.

5. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of items 3 or 4, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises from 5 to 15 wt.% of oligo fructose, wherein the wt.% indication is based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 w t.%.

6. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding items, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises;

polydextrose in an amount of 62 wt.% to less than 75 wt.%; resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 8 wt.% to 20 wt.%;

• oligofructose in an amount of 2.5 wt.% to 15 wt.%; and

• inulin in an amount of 2.5 wt.% to 15 wt.%.

7. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding items, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 62 wt.% to less than 70 wt.%;

resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 8 wt.% to 20 wt.%;

oligofractose in an amount of 5 wt.% to 15 wt.%; and

• inulin in an amount of 5 wt.% to 15 wt.%.

8. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding claims, which comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 63 wt.% to less than 68 wt.%;

resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 12 wt.% to 18 wt.%;

oligofructose in an amount of 7 wt.% to 12.5 wt.%; and

inulin in an amount of 7 wt.% to 12.5 wt.%.

8a. Sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the preceding items, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises:

polydextrose in an amount of 63 wt.% to 68 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 1 1 wt.% to 1 wt.%;

• oligofructose in an amount of 6 wt.% to 14 wt.%; and

inulin in an amount of 6 wt.% to 14 wt.%.

8b. Sugar replacement composition according to the preceding item 8a, wherein said sugar replacement composition comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 63 wt.% to 67 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 13 wt.% to 17 wt.%;

• oligofractose in an amount of 8 wt.% to 12 wt.%; and

• inulin in an amount of 6 wt.% to 1 2 wt.%.

8c. According to another separate embodiment of the present invention, a sugar replacement composition is provided, which comprises polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin, a high intensity sweetener as well as inulin. and oligofractose. Unlike the other embodiments of the present invention, the sugar replacement compositions of this embodiment additionally comprise one or more sugar alcohols selected from the group consisting of lactitol, isomalt, and maltitol, and preferably isomalt. The sugar replacement compositions of this embodiment are however free of other sugar alcohols. The sugar replacement composition according to this embodiment preferably comprises from 3 wt.% to 7 wt.% of inulin, wherein the wt.% indication is based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%. Moreover, it preferably comprises from 1 to 5 wt.% of oligo fructose, wherein the wt.% indication is based on the total of the sugar replacement composition being 100 wt.%.

Typical compositions of this embodiment are as follows:

• polydextrose in an amount of 61 wt.% to 70 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 3 wt.% to 1 1 wt.%;

• oligofractose in an amount of 0.5 wt.% to 6 wt.%;

inulin in an. amount of 1 wt.% to 9 wt.% and

• lactitol, isomalt, and/or maltitol in an amount of 16 to 24 wt.%.

8d. Sugar replacement composition according to the preceding item 8c, wherein said sugar replacement composition, comprises:

• polydextrose in an amount of 63 wt.% to 68 wt.%;

• resistant maltodextrin in an amount of 5 wt.% to 9 wt.%;

• oligofractose in an amount of 1 wt.% to 4 wt.%; and

• inulin. in. an. amount of 3 wt.% to 7 wt.%; and

• lactitol, isomalt, and/or maltitol in an amount of 18 to 22 wt.%.

The amount of high intensity sweetener contained in the above compositions can be chosen according to the type of the high intensity sweetener and the desired sweetness. If sucralose is used and sweetness comparable to that of sugar is desired, the amount of the high intensity sweetener is preferably in the range of from 0.1 to 0.17 wt.%. If other high intensity sweeteners are used, the required amount can be calculated based on the ratio of the known relative sweetness of the high intensity sweetener of interest, to the known relative sweetness of sucralose.

9. Method for manufacturing a sugar replacement composition according to any one of items 1 to 8d, which method comprises the step of mixing high intensity sweetener with polydextrose and/or resistant maltodextrin and optionally one or more further ingredients of the sugar replacement composition.

10. Method according to item 9, wherein the mixture is obtained in the mixing step in the dry state, followed by the step of forming a solution of the resulting mixture in an. aqueous medium, followed by the step of crystallization.

11. Method according to item 9, wherein high intensity sweetener, polydextrose and optionally further ingredients of the sugar replacement composition are mixed in dissolved form to yield a solution in an aqueous medium, followed by the step of crystallization.

12. Method according to item 9, wherein the resulting mixture is granulated and/or agglomerated.

13. Method according to item 12, wherein granulation is accomplished by means of wet granulation with an. aqueous granulation medium, preferably by fluid bed granulation and/or spray drying.

14. Use of the sugar replacement compositions according to any one of the above items 1 to 8 for the manufacture of chocolate, bakery products, frozen or non-frozen desserts, yoghurts, jam, marmalade, beverages and whipped cream.

15. Method for manufacturing chocolate, which comprises the steps of providing ingredients comprising cocoa mass, cocoa butter or another source of fat, emulsitier and the sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the items 1 to 8 above; mixing the above- mentioned ingredients in any order, conching at elevated temperature; and cooling the resulting mass.

16. Method for manufacturing chocolate according to the preceding item 15, wherein conching is performed in a temperature range of from 40 to 90 °C and for a time period of from 60 to 720 min, preferably 180 to 300 min.

17. Method for manufacturing chocolate according to the preceding item 15 or 16, which further comprises the step of grinding the ingredients. 18. Chocolate obtainable according to the method of anyone of the preceding items 15. 16 and 17.

1 . Method for making bakery products, which comprises the steps of providing ingredients comprising flour, a source of fat, water, an emulsifier, a leavening agent and the ingredients of a sugar replacement composition according to anyone of the above items 1 to 8; mixing the above ingredients in any order; heating the resulting dough; and cooling.

20. Bakery product obtainable according to the method of Item 1.9.

4, Detailed Description of the Invention

4.1. Definitions

Unless specified otherwise, all % indications are meant to be indications of weight%.

Moreover, unless specified otherwise, all weight% indications are meant to be based on the total weight of the sugar replacement composition, being 100 weight%.

The term "polysaccharide" refers to all linear or branched, molecules containing 10 or more saccharide repeating units. Such repeating units may be the same or differ from each other. If a compound is present in the form of a mixture of different molecules with differing degrees of polymerization, the compound is to be regarded as a polysaccharide if it has an average degree of polymerization of 10 or more.

The term "oligosaccharide" refers to linear or branched molecules containing two or more but less than 10 saccharide repeating units. Such repeating units may be the same or differ from each other. If a compound is present in the form of a mixture of molecules having different degrees of polymerization, the compound is to be regarded as an oligosaccharide if its average degree of polymerization i less than 10.

References to "polysaccharide components" and "oligosaccharide components" are meant to be references to those components of a composition of one or more components, which exhibit a degree of polymerization, of 10 or more (polysaccharide components) and less than 10 (oligosaccharide components), respectively. Thus, for example, a particular compound having an average degree of polymerization above 10 will be regarded as a polysaccharide in the context of the present invention; nevertheless, it may contain not only polysaccharide components but also oligosaccharide components.

The term "high intensity sweetener" is meant to refer to substances having a sweetness that is at least 30 times higher than that of sucrose.

The term "flavour enhancer" is meant to refer to substances that have the effect of increasing the sweetness sensation created by other sweet substances.

The term "soluble" is meant to refer to substances having a solubility of 1 g or more in 100 ml water at 20°C. This is determined by mixing 1 g of the test substance with 100 ml of water and stirring the resultant at the specified temperature. If the test substance is soluble, it will form a clear solution or, especially in case of polymeric substances, a clear viscous or gel-like substance.

The term "insoluble" is meant to refer to substances that are not soluble according to the above definition. Such compounds form, a turbid dispersion or suspension when being subjected to the above test conditions.

The term "non-selective non-digestible polysaccharide" is meant to refer to polysaccharides that are not digested in the human gastrointestinal tract.

The term "food preparation" is meant to include any product that is suitable for human consumption including solid foods, semi-solid foods, liquid foods (beverages) and related products like chewing gum. Pharmaceuticals and food supplements as such are not to be regarded as food preparations in the context of the present invention. However, it is not excluded that food preparations may contain as one (further) ingredient substances typically found in food supplements or pharmaceuticals, such as vitamins, minerals or substances having antioxidant properties.

The term "sugar" is used in the context of the present application as a synonym for "table sugar", "sucrose" or "saccharose". The term "sugar alcohol" is used in the context of the present invention as characterizing a family of compounds including those having the general formula HOCH 2 (CHOH) n CH 2 0H, wherein n can be any number in the range of from 1 to 0 and typically 2 to 4» Typical examples of such sugar alcohols are crythritol and xylitol. The term "sugar alcohol" further refers to sugar alcohol compounds of the general type characterized above, which are linked via an ether bridge to another compound having two or more hydroxyl groups. Typical examples of such sugar alcohols are lactitol. isomalt, and maltitol. A last group of sugar alcohols are cyclic molecules of the general formula c(CHOH) m , wherein m represents a number in the range of from 5 to 8 and typically 6, An example of this type of sugar alcohols is inositol.

The term "polyol" is used in the context of the present application as having the same meaning as "sugar alcohol".

Amount indications relying on numerical ranges in the tables below are to be understood such that only those combinations of amounts are intended to be described, which add up to 100 weight% (or less than 100 weight% to allow for the presence of unmentioned additional, optional ingredients).

If point values are indicated, these are to be understood as having a margin of error of ± 10%. This also applies to indications such as "equal sweetness of sugar".

4.2. Overview and Compositional Ranges

(a) General considerations applicable to all sugar replacement compositions

Having regard to the above objectives, the present inventors have identified that sugar alcohols can be avoided without comprising performance characteristics of the products made from such sugar replacement compositions if the sugar replacement composition comprises polydextrose, resistant maltodextrin and high intensity sweetener in quantities as specified in appended claim 1 . Based on this finding, the present invention has been completed.

The following table characterizes the sugar replacement compositions according to this broadest inventive concept. Component Amount (weight%) Amount (weiglit%)

Polydextrose >60 - <9() >60 - <90

Resistant maltodextrin 5 - 40 10 - 40

High Intensity >0 to I >0 to I

sweetener

The amount of high intensity sweetener can be selected in view of the desired sweetness of the resulting sugar replacement composition. The amount is typically in the range of from more than 0 weight% to 1 weight%, preferably from more than 0 weight% to 0.5 weight%. The amount also depends on the relative sweetness of the high intensity sweetener. Suitable amounts for sucralose are typically in. the range of from 0, 1 to 0.15 weight%. Relative amounts for other high intensity sweeteners may be adjusted relying on the relative ratio of sweetness in comparison with, sucralose.

Specific aspects of the above broadest embodiment relate to sugar replacement compositions of the invention, which are characterized by containing the following ingredients in the specified, amounts;

and

In one embodiment, the amount of high intensity sweetener may be selected such, that the sweetness of the resulting sugar replacement composition is equal to the sweetness of sugar either on a weight basis or on a volume basis. This can be tested, for instance, by dissolving equal amounts (on a weight basis) of the sugar replacement composition and of sugar in water and by testing sweetness using a taste panel.

These general indications are applicable to all of the specific embodiments, described below. Hence, unless specified otherwise, the relative amount of high intensity sweetener is always within, the range of >0 weight% to 1 weight percent. It is thus to be understood that high intensity sweetener is present in all of these compositions in the relative amount specified above.

(b) Compositions of the present invention comprising fractan components.

It has furthermore been found that the performance characteristics of such sugar replacement compositions can be further improved by additionally using one or more fractan components. Among the fractan components, inulin, oligofructose and agavin are preferred classes of substances. Relative amounts for the entire fractan component are typically in the range of from more than 0 weight% to 30 weight% and preferably 10 weight% to 25 weight%. Preferably, each of the above-mentioned fructans is either absent completely or present in an amount of from 2.5 weight% to 15 weight%. more preferably in the range of from 5 weight% to 15 weight%, and most preferably in the range of from 7 weight% to 12.5 weight%.

The following tables characterize sugar replacement compositions of this aspect of the present invention:

Composition (al) Composition (a2) Composition (a3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weigh t%)

Polydextrose 62 " 5 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant S 20 8 - 20 12 - 18

altodextrin

Inulin 2.5 - 15 5 - 15 7 - 12.5

Total fractan 2.5 - 30 5 - 30 7 - 30

content

Composition (a4) Composition (a5) Composition (a6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weightVo) (weightVo)

Polvdextrose 61 - 69 63 - 67 .865

Resistant 1 1 - 19 13 - 17 15

Maltodextrin

Inulin 6 - 14 8 - 12 10

Total fractan 6 - 28 8 - 24 20

content

Composition (bl) Com osition (b2) Composition (b3)

Component Amount Amount Amount (weigiit%) (weight%) (weight"/*)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12 - 18

Maltodextrin

Oligofructose 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Total fructan 2.5-30 5-30 7-30

content

Composition (b4) Composition (b5) Composition (b6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

{weight%) (weight%) (weight 0 /*)

Polydextrose 61 69 63-67 64.865

Resistant 11-19 13-17 15

Maltodextrin

Oligofructose 6-14 8-12 8-12

Total fructan 6-28 8-24 20

content

Composition (cl) Composition (c2) Composition (c3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weigfat%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - ' 75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant: 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7 - 12.5

Total fructan 2.5-30 5-30 7-30

content

It is even more preferable to use two or more of such fructan components in combination in the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. The following tables characterize such sugar replacement compositions according to the present invention.

Composition (d4) Composition (d5) Com osition (d6) Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 61 -69 63-67 64.865

Resistant 11 - 19 13-17 15

Maltodextrin

Inulin 6- 14 8-12 10

Oligofructose 6-14 8- 12 10

Total fructan 12-28 16-24 20

content

Composition (el) Composition (e2) Composition (e3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12- 18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Agavin 2.5- 15 5- 15 7- 12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10 30 14-30 content

Composition («1 ) Composition (g2) Composition (g3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weightVo)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - 7() 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5- 15 5- 15 7-12.5

Oligofructose 2.5 - 1.5 5-15 7- 12.5

Agavin 2.5- 15 5- 15 7- 12.5

Total fructan 7.5-30 15-30 21 -30 content According to yet another embodiment of the present invention, inulin may be present together with oligofructose, but no distinction is made between inulin and oligofructose as far as the amount indications are concerned. This means that only the combined amount of inulin and oligofructose is limited.

Of course, it is not critical for these embodiments how much of inulin and how much of oligofructose is present, as long as the combined amounts of the two components are within the specified ranges. It is even possible and within the scope of these embodiments that only inulin and no oligofructose is present (or vice versa), provided the amount of the respective component is within the range specified for the combined amount of inulin and oligofructose.

In yet further embodiments, one or more true tan components is/are present and merely the total fructan content is limited. Typical compositions of this aspect are as follows. Composition (jl) Composition j2) Composition (j3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight 0 /..)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Total fractan 2.5-30 5-30 7-30

content

(c) Compositions comprising preferred amounts of high intensity sweetener

In further preferred embodiments, the sugar replacement compositions contain high intensity sweetener in a relative amount, which is in the range of from more than 0 weight % to 0.5 weight %. Such sugar replacement compositions are exemplified in the tables below.

Composition (kl) Composition (k2) Composition (k3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Oligofructose 2.5-15 5 15 7-12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10-30 14-30

content

High intensity > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5

sweetener

Composition (k4) Composition (k5) Composition (k6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weig t%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 61 -69 63 - 67 64.865 Resistant 11 - 19 13-17 15

Maltodextrin

Inulin 6-14 8-12 10

Oligofructose 6 14 8-12 10

Total fructan 12-28 16-24 20

content

High intensity > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 sweetener

Composition (11) Composition (12) Composition (13)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

InuHn 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7- 12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10-30 14-30 content

High intensity > 0 - 0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5

sweetener

Composition (ml) Composition (m2) Composition (ni3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight 0 /.) (weight 0 /.)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Agavin 2.5 - 15 5-15 7 - 12.5

Oligofructose 2.5-15 5-15 7- 12.5

Total fructan 5 - 30 10-30 14-30 content

High intensity > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 sweetener

Composition (nl) Composition (n2) Composition (n3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight 0 /.)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Oligofructose 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Agavin 2.5-15 5- 15 7-12.5

Total fructan 7.5-30 15-30 21-30 content

High intensity > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5 sweetener

Composition (ql) Composition (q2) Composition (q3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight %) (weightVo)

Poiydextrose 62 - <75 62 -<"0 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12- 18

Maltodextrin Total fructan 2.5-30 5-30 7-30 content

High intensity > 0 - 0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5

sweetener

Composition (q4) Composition (q5) Composition (q6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weigbt%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 61-69 63-67 64.865

Resistant 11-19 13-17 15

Maltodextrin

Total fructan 12-28 16 24 20

content

High intensity > 0 - 0.5 > 0-0.5 > 0-0.5

sweetener

Compositions with the preferred, high intensity sweetener sucralose are described in the tables below.

Composition (k'l) Composition (k'l) Composition (k'3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight %) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - '75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12- 18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Oligofructose 2,5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10-30 14-30

content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (k'4) Composition (k'5) Composition (k'6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) ( eight%) (weight%)

Polvdextrose 61 -69 63-67 64.865

Resistant 11-19 13-17 15

Maltodextrin

Inulin 6 14 8-12 10

Oligofructose 6- 14 8-12 10

Total fructan 12-28 16-24 20

content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity

sweetener Composition (PI) Composition (Γ2) Composition (P3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weiglit%) (weigtit%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

altodextrin

Inu!in 2,5-15 5- 15 7 12.5

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10-30 14-30

content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (m'l) Composition (in'2) 1 Composition (m'3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight 0 /.)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Oligo fructose 2.5- 15 5-15 7- 12.5

Total fructan 5-30 10-30 14 30 content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (n'l) Composition (n'2) Composition (n*3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8 - 20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Oiigofructose 2.5- 15 5-15 7- 12.5

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7-12.5

Total fructan 7.5-30 15 - 30 21-30 content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (o'l) Composition (o'2) Composition (o'3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) ( eight%) ( eight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68 Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin and 5 - 30 10-30 14-25

Oligofructose

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (p'l) Coin position (p'2) Composition (p'3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weigbt%) (weight%)

Polydextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Inulin and 5-30 10-30 14-25

Oligofructose

Agavin 2.5-15 5-15 7 - 12.5

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (q'l) Composition (q'l) Composition (q 5 3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight %)

Polvdextrose 62 - <75 62 - <70 63 - <68

Resistant 8-20 8-20 12-18

Maltodextrin

Total fructan 2.5-30 5-30 7-30

content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity sweetener

Composition (q'4) Composition (q'5) Com/position (q'6)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(wcight%) (weight%) (weight%) Polydextrose 61 69 63 - 67 64.865

Resistant 1 1 19 13 - 1 7 15

Maltodextrin

Total fructan 12 - 28 16 - 24 20

content

Sucralose high 0.135 0.135 0.135

intensity

sweetener

The further separate embodiment of the present invention pertains to sugar replacement compositions containing one or more sugar alcohols selected from the group consisting of lactitol, isomalt, and maltitol, and preferably isomalt, but no other sugar alcohols as defined hereinabove. The additional use of isomalt may be advantageous in spite of its laxative effect since the resulting compositions may be used very well various applications, they exhibit an excellent taste and are advantageous also in terras of low glycemic index and manufacturing costs. Typical compositions of this embodiment are illustrated by the tables below.

Composition (tl ) Composition (t2) Composition (t3) Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight"/.) (weight%) (weight %)

Poly dextrose 62-70 64-68 65.865

Resistant 3-11 5-9 7

Maltodextrin

Inulin 1 -9 3-7 5

Oligofructose 0.5-4 1-3 2

Total fructan 1.5- 13 4-10 7

content

lactitol, isomalt, 16-24 18-22 20

and/or maltitol

Composition (ul) Composition (u2) Composition (u3)

Component Amount Amount Amount

(weight%) (weight%) (weight 0 /.,)

Polydextrose 62-70 64 - 68 65.865

Resistant 3-11 5-9 7

Maltodextrin

Total fructan

content 0.5-13 4-10 7

lactitol, isomalt, 16-24 18-22 20

and/or maltitol

Each of the compositions rl to u3 disclosed in the above tables preferably contains a high intensity sweetener in an amount of more than 0 weight% to 0.5 eight%. More preferably, the high intensity sweetener is sucralose. In this case, it is particularly preferred that sucralose is present in each of the above compositions rl to u3 in an amount of 0.135 weight%.

The practical applications of the sugar replacement compositions of this embodiment are the same as those described herein for the other embodiments of the present invention. Hence, instead of using a sugar replacement composition of the invention, which is completely free of sugar alcohols, it is possible to use a sugar replacement composition according to this embodiment, which contains lactitol, isomalt, and/or maltitol. No special adaptations need to be made.

(d) Sugar replacement compositions comprising further optional components

Further optional components may also be present, Such optional components include flavor enhancers, soluble non-selective non digestible fibers, insoluble non-selective non-digestible fibers, vitamins, minerals, health-promoting bacteria and/or anti-caking agents. Typically, the flavour enhancer will be used in relatively small amounts such as 1 weight% or less, preferably 0.5 weight% or less. Flavour enhancers are in particular used in an amount of 0.05 to 0.5 weight% and more preferably 0, 1 to 0.3 weight%.

If soluble and/or insoluble non-selective non-digestible fibers are employed in the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention, it is preferred to use them in amounts of from 0.05 weight% to 10 weight%, more preferably from 0.1 weight% to 5 weight% and most preferably in an amount of from 0.15 weight% to 2.5 weight%.

If an anti-caking agent is used, it is preferable to add the anti-caking agent in an amount of 0.1 to 0.5 weight% and more preferably in an amount of from 0.2 to 0,3 weight%. if a vitamin or a mineral is used, it is preferable to add these components in such small amounts that recommended daily allowances for the respective vitamins and/or minerals are not exceeded when using amounts of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention, which correspond to typical daily consumptions of sugar.

The amount indications provided herein for the optional ingredients (soluble and/or insoluble non-selective non-digestible fibers, vitamins, minerals, health promoting bacteria and/or anti- caking agents) are valid in connection with all of the compositions shown in the above tables.

(e) Balance between polysaccharide components and oligosaccharide components

It may be advantageous for various reasons to select the components and relative amounts of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention such that said sugar replacement composition comprises polysaccharide components in a total amount of from 62 to 95 weight %, preferably 65 to 90 weight %, more preferably 70 to 85 weight % and that the total amount of oligosaccharide components is from 38 to 5 weight %, preferably 35 to 10 weight %, and more preferably 30 to 15 weight %.

By maintaining such a balance of oligosaccharide components and polysaccharide components, it is possible to further improve the health benefits of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention, to properly adjust its browning characteristics as well as its structural characteristics.

4.3. Components

4.3.1. Polydextrose

Polydextrose is a polysaccharide consisting of glucose repeating units that are linked, via different types of linkages, wherein 1 → 6 bonds are mainly present. Smaller amounts of other repeating units such as sorbitol and citric acid may also be present. Polydextrose is a soluble fiber that has a caloric value of only about Ikcal/g since it is indigestible for the human body. It is also advantageous insofar as it has prebiotic properties and can mask the cooling effect of erythritol. Polydextrose is commercially available under the trade names Litesse, Sta-Lite and Winway.

4.3.2, Resistant Maltodextrin

Similar to polydextrose, resistant maltodextrins are polysaccharides based on glucose repeating units. Resistant maltodextrins primarily have a-( l— »4) and a-(l→6) glycosidic linkages as well as farther glycosidic linkages. Resistant maltodextrins are characterized by a high degree of branching, Due to this highly branched structure and the unusual linkages found in. its structure, resistant maltodextrin is not digested by the human body and therefore identified as resistant maltodextrin. Maltodextrin may be present in a variety of different degrees of polymerization. Typically, resistant maltodextrin contains approximately equal amounts of oligosaccharide components and polysaccharide components. Preferably, the relative amount of polysaccharide components is higher than that of oligosaccharide components, such that about 50% of the resistant maltodextrin has a degree of polymerization above 1 1 . Resistant maltodextrin does not lead to flatulence and also has no laxative effects. Moreover, its use is advantageous because it has prebiotic properties. Commercially available resistant maltodextrin can be obtained under the trade name NUTRIOSE from Roquette. Suitable grades are for instance FB06 and FB10.

4.3.3. Inulin and Oligofructose

Inulin is an oligo- and/or polysaccharide consisting of D- fructose residues. These residues are linked by β-( 2— > 1 )-linkages. These chains of fructose repeating units are terminated by a β- (2→l)-linked glucose residue. Inulin is commercially available under the trade name Raftilin®. Inulin has prebiotic properties and is thus advantageous for the gastrointestinal health. Excessive ingestion of inulin can however lead to flatulence. The relative amount of inulin employed in the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention is therefore limited as specified above. In the context of the present invention, inulin is also advantageous as a component that is suitable for masking the cooling effect of crythritol.

Oligofructose is an oligosaccharide, wherein fructose units are linked by P-(2→l)-linkages. In fact, oligofructose can be obtained by hydrolytic or enzymatic degradation of inulin. Consequently, the degree of polymerization of oligofructose is lower than that of inulin.

Unfortunately, there is no generally accepted degree of polymerization distinguishing between inulin and oligofructose products. That is, products having a degree of polymerization in the range of from 7 to 10 are sometimes identified as inulin and sometimes as oligofructose. In the context of the present invention, the term "inulin" is used to define oligo- and polysaccharides having an average degree of polymerization of 7 or more, whereas "oligofructose" is used to define oligosaccharides having an average degree of polymerization of less than 7.

If a mixture of Inulin and oligofructose is used, the relative amounts of the two components can be derived from the quantities of "inulin" and "oligofructose" starting materials that are incorporated into the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. If this information is not available, the relative amounts of "inulin" and "oligofructose" according to the above definition of the present invention can be determined by experimentally quantifying the relative amounts of the individual p-(2→l )-linked fructan components having a degree of polymerization of 1 , 2, 3, 4, etc., to thereby obtain an experimentally determined distribution of degrees of polymerization; and by curve-fitting two mono-disperse distribution curves to the experimentally determined distributions of β-( 2— > l )-linked fructan components. An alternative type of oligofructose is made by transfructosylation on sucrose using a β- fructosidase of Aspergillus niger. This type of oligofructose is also referred to as fractooligosaccharide (FOS). Contrary to the inulin degradation products, the fmctooligosaccharides always have a terminal glucose residue. The degree of polymerization of fructooligosaccharides is typically from 3 to 5. In the context of the present invention both types of oligofructose can be used. Depending on the desired properties of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention, a suitable type of oligofructose may be chosen. For instance, fractooligosaccharide is less reactive in browning reactions. Hence, if it is desired to provide a sugar replacement composition that gives rise to enhanced browning effects, e.g. in some bakery products, it may be preferred to use oligofructose that is a degradation product of inulin. On the other hand, if it is preferred to avoid (excessive) browning, the use of fructooiigosaccharide may be more advantageous.

Oligofructose is commercially available under the trade name Raftilose®.

Oligofructose exhibits some sweetness, which is approximately 30 to 50% of the sweetness of sugar. Oligofructose has a low caloric value and contributes to gastrointestinal, tract health. However, it may lead to flatulence. It is therefore preferred to use only relative small amounts of oligofructose in the sugar replacement composition of the present invention, as specified above.

4.3.4, Agavin

Agavin is a term characterizing fructan-type oligosaccharides and polysaccharides derived from agave plants and/or dasylirion plants. The structure of agavin-type fructan s is rather complex. Agavins are mainly based on fructose repeating units. The molecules are typically branched and contain blocks that are based on fructose repeating units that are linked by inulin-type β-(2— *I)-linkages and other blocks based on fructose repeating units linked by le van -type P-(2→6)-linkages. Additionally, glucose repeating units are also incorporated. The origin, isolation and characterization of agavins is described, for instance, in "Agave Fructans as Prebiotics" by M.G. Lopez and J.E. Urias-Silvas in Recent Advances in Fmctooligosaccharides research, 2007, 1 -14 and "Water-soluble carbohydrates and fructan structure patterns from agave and dasylirion species" by N.A. Mancilla-MargalH and M.G. Lopez in Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2006, 7832-7839. Different types of agavins are known and degrees of polymerization may vary broadly at least in a range of from 3 to 32, Such agavins are prebiotic and thus contribute to gastrointestinal tract health. They may advantageously be used as a substitute for imilin and/ or oli go fructose, or in addition to these other fructan-type components.

4.3.5. Total Fructans

According to yet another embodiment of the present invention, one or more fructan component selected from inulin and/or oligo ructose and/or agavin may be present, optionally with further fructan components (like levan-type and graminan-type compounds) as long as these further fructan. components are suitable for human consumption. According to this embodiment, no distinction is made between the individual fructan components including inulin, oligofructose and/or agavin as far as the amount indications are concerned. This means that only the combined amount of fructan components like agavin, inulin and/or oligofructose is limited.

4.3.6, High Intensity Sweeteners

In principle, any high intensity sweetener, which is permitted for human consumption, may be used as a component of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. Suitable high intensity sweeteners and their relative sweetness compared to the sweetness of sugar are the following; cyclamate (30-50), glycyrrhizin (50), aspartame (120-200), acesulfame K (200), saccharine (250-300), stevioside (300), sueralose (600), monellinc (1500-2000), neohesperidine DC (1800), alitame (2000), thaumatin (2000-3000) and neotame (8000). In addition to the high intensity sweeteners listed above, it is also possible to use stevia extract or monk-fruit extract. Sueralose is a preferred high intensity sweetener.

Of course, .any combination of two or more high intensity sweeteners, including especially the above-mentioned high intensity sweeteners, may also be used in accordance with the present invention. Among such, compositions, it is particularly advantageous to use a combination of acesulfame K and. neohesperidene DC in a ratio of acesulfame K to neohesperidine DC in the range of from 9.5 to 1 1.5 and preferably 10.0 to 1 1.0. Also preferred, are combinations of sueralose with thaumatin, combinations of sueralose with (stevioside and/or stevia extract) and combinations of sueralose with thaumatin and (stevioside and/or stevia extract). 4.3.7. Flavour Enhancers

The above-mentioned acesulfame K has an. unpleasant bitter and metallic aftertaste. This unpleasant aftertaste can be masked by combining it with neohesperidene DC. There is furthermore a synergistic enhancement of the sweetness effect. Hence, neohesperidene DC acts not only as a sweetener in its own right but additionally as a flavor enhancer for acesulfame K. It thus has a dual function. Another flavor enhancer is glucono-6-lactone. Glucono-6-lactone has the effect of enhancing the sweetness sensation caused by other sweeteners. To avoid confusion, if a substance like neohesperidine DC has a dual function, acting as a flavor enhancer and as a high intensity sweetener, its amount is to be considered only in relation to the above amount indications for the high intensity sweetener component, and not in relation to the amount indications for the flavor enhancer component.

4.3.8. Insoluble Fibers

In some aspects of the present invention, the sugar replacement composition further comprises insoluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides. Examples of insoluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides are cellulose and hemicellulose. These polysaccharides are found inter alia in cereal fibers such as wheat fibers. The use of wheat fiber is thus contemplated in the context of the present invention. Such fibers may typically have an average length between 20 and 80 μπι. The average length preferably is in the range of from 25 to 45 μιη. The use of wheat fibers is preferred in particular in combination with the use of oligofractose. This combination may be particularly advantageous for bakery applications because advantageous crust color and brilliance may be accomplished when using this combination of components. Using wheat fibers in addition to oligofructose in the sugar replacement composition of the present invention allows to avoid the generation of a too dark crust and crumb.

The use of such insoluble non-selective non-digestible fibers also contributes to the beneficial health effects of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. In particular, such fibers aid in preventing constipation and reducing blood sugar levels in people suffer from diabetes. 43,9, Soluble Fibers

In addition or alternatively to the insoluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides, it is furthermore possible to use one or more soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides in the context of the present invention. As possible soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides for use in the present invention, the following may be mentioned: xanthan. tara, carrageenan, tragacanth, locust bean gum, agar, guar gum, arabic gum, carboxymethyl cellulose, and pectin. The use of such polysaccharides is advantageous insofar as they contribute to an increased shelf life and softness of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. If carrageenan is used as the soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharide, it is particularly preferred to use kappa carrageenan. This polysaccharide is preferably used in an amount of from 0.05 to 2 weight% and more preferably in an amount of from 0.05 to 1 weight% and most preferably in an amount of from 0.3 to 0.7 weight%.

According to another preferred embodiment of this aspect of the present invention, carboxymethyl cellulose or a combination of carboxymethyl cellulose and microcrystalline cellulose is used as the soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharide component. This type of polysaccharide is advantageous because it contributes to the accomplishment of a desired viscosity in viscous food preparations, which matches that of food preparations containing sugar.

The use of such soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides is advantageous insofar as it contributes to the beneficial health effect on the gastrointestinal tract of the consumer. This is because these polysaccharides are non-selectively fermented in the colon to yield short chain fatty acids, which are helpful in preventing colon cancer and give rise to further beneficial health effects. Additionally, the use of soluble non-selective non-digestible polysaccharides may also be advantageous in suppressing flatulence effects that may be caused by other components that may be employed in the sugar replacement composition of the present invention (e.g. oligofractose).

4.3,10. Further optional components

According to the present invention, it is furthermore possible to add yet further components, which may contribute to the advantageous properties of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention (or which may reduce undesired effects of the sugar replacement composition). For instance, it is possible in the context of the present invention to incorporate one or more anti-flatulence agents into the sugar replacement composition. As possible anti- flatulence agents, the following may be mentioned: dimethicone, activated charcoal, simethicone (i.e. dimethicone activated by SiC) 2 ), chili, capsaicin, garlic, ginger, krachai, lemon grass and tumeric.

According to another embodiment, it is possible to incorporate an anti-caking agent into the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention, A typical anti-caking agent suitable for use in the present invention is Si0 2 .

Further optional ingredients are vitamins, minerals and health promoting bacteria. Among the vitamins, vitamins A, B, C, E and K may for instance be used as optional components. As minerals, the following elements may for instance be used: C , Mg, K, P, Se, Fe and Zn. As health promoting bacteria, the following may for instance be used: probiotic species of the genera bifidobacterium and lactobacillus.

The relative amounts of these components are not particularly limited as long as these optional components do not interfere with the sugar replacement-characteristics of the composition of the present invention.

4.4, Manufacture of sugar replacement compositions

4.4.1. Mixing

The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention can be manufactured by any suitable method involving at least the step of mixing the essential ingredients. There is no limitation concerning the relative order of the mixing steps. It is, for instance, possible to prepare a sugar replacement composition by simultaneously mixing all the ingredients of the sugar replacement composition. Alternatively, the ingredients of the sugar replacement composition may be mixed in a sequential manner, wherein the relative order of the individual mixing steps is not limited.

The above-mentioned mixing can be performed in the solid state or in the liquid state. If solids are mixed, this can be done in any conventionally used mixer, including ribbon blender, V Blender, continuous processor, cone screw blender, screw blender, double cone blender, planetary mixer, double planetary mixer, high viscosity mixer, high shear rotor stator, dispersion mixers, paddle mixer, jet mixer, drum blenders, banbury mixer, intermix mixer, etc.

Mixing i n the liquid state can be done relying on any suitable liquid medium. It is preferred to use an aqueous medium and it is particularly preferred to use water as the medium.

The resulting mixture may be used as such as a sugar replacement composition of the present invention, e.g. in the form of a powdery or particulate mixture or in the form of an aqueous solution containing said mixture. Such uses may be advantageous in particular for industrial applications. Alternatively, the resulting mixture may be further processed to obtain sugar replacement compositions of the present invention. Such further processing steps are described below.

4.4.2. Agglomeration / Granulation / Spray drying

In another embodiment of the present invention, the above-mentioned solid mixture resulting from, the mixing step may be subjected to an agglomeration, granulation and/or spray drying process.

There are no specific limitations as to the types of agglomeration process and/or types of granulation process and/or types of spray drying process that can be used.

A preferred agglomeration method is press agglomeration. Other agglomeration methods are also suitable for use in the present invention.

A preferred granulation method is wet granulation. The granulation liquid is not particularly restricted. The use of an aqueous liquid is preferred and the use of water is even more preferred. Another preferred granulation method employs an aqueous solution of dispersion of a suitable binder substance, as commonly used for instance in the pharmaceutical industry, e.g. com. starch, a cellulose derivative such as methyl cellulose or gelatin. A particularly preferred wet granulation method is fluid bed granulation. Other granulation methods, such as dry granulation, etc., can also be used. The particle sizes after granulation, are typically in the range of from 0.1 to 2.5 mm. and more preferably 0.2 to 1.5 mm.

A preferred spray dtying method includes the formation of a solution or a dispersion of the sugar replacement composition in a suitable solvent, which is subsequently sprayed into a drying chamber where droplets are formed and the solvent contained in the individual droplets is evaporated. The solvent is preferably an aqueous solvent and most preferably water.

4.4.3. Crystallization

As an alternative to agglomeration/granulation, it is possible to crystallize the mixture obtained in the above-mentioned mixing step. If the mixture is obtained in. liquid form, crystallization can be effected using the liquid mixture as such. If the mixture is obtained in solid form, it is dissolved in a first sub-step in a suitable crystallization, solvent. The crystallization solvent is not particularly limited. In a preferred embodiment, aqueous liquids are used. The use of water is particularly preferred. Dissolution is preferably effected under stirring conditions. It is also preferred to heat the crystallization solvent/resulting solution, for instance to a temperature in the range of from 20° Celsius to 95°C, preferably 30°C to 70°C and more preferably 35°C to 55°C, wherein the heating temperature should be equal (reflux conditions) or less than, the boiling point of the solvent. The relative amount of crystallization solvent is not particularly limited as long as it is sufficient, to permit the formation of a clear solution at the chosen temperature conditions. It is preferred to use as little crystallization solvent as possible, for instance not more than 20% of the crystallization solvent more than the amount, which is required to obtain a. clear solution, more preferably not more than 10% more than the required minimum amount for obtaining a clear solution. Most preferably, the amount of crystallization solvent exceeds the minimum required amount for obtaining a clear solution by 0-5%.

After formation of the solution, crystals are formed in a next sub-step. The formation of crystals can be accomplished by cooling, evaporation and/or active nueleation by scratching the container and/or addition of seed crystals.

In a further sub-step, the crystals are separated from, the mother liquor. Any method for solid- liquid separation known in the art can. be employed, for instance filtration, centrifugation, etc. The resulting product can optionally be washed and/or dried. The crystallization process can be carried out continuously or as a batch- wise process. 4,5. Properties

The sugar replacement composition of the present invention is characterized by the following advantageous properties.

(a) Sweetness

The sugar replacement composition of the present invention may exhibit a sweetness that is comparable to the sweetness of sugar (either on a weight basis or on a volume basis). According to other embodiments of the present invention, the sugar replacement composition has a sweetness that is lower than the sweetness of sugar and typically in the range of from 10 % to 95% of the sweetness of sugar preferably in. the range of from 25 to 80% of the sweetness of sugar and more preferably in the range of from 30% to 60% of the sweetness of sugar (on a weight basis).

(b) Structural characteristics of sugar

The sugar replacement composition of the present invention has,, at least in some aspects, the same structural characteristics as sugar. This means that it allows to accomplish the same sponge-like structure in bakery products and to accomplish the same viscous structure in jams, ice creams and sorbets.

(c) Browning Effect

At least in some embodiments, the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention give rise to a browning effect upon heating, which is comparable to that of sugar when, being used in caramelization and/or in bakery products. As explained above, the degree of browning can be fine-tuned by adjusting the relative amount of oligosaccharide components such as oligofructose in relation to the polysaccharide components. Moreover, addition of wheat fibers may also be contemplated in this fine-tuning process.

(d) Low caloric value The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention are generally characterized by very low caloric values. Preferred embodiments of the present invention have caloric values of 100 kcal/! QG g or less and preferably less than 80 kcal/100 g,

(e) Low glyeemic index

The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention are furthermore suitable for use by diabetic patients because they are characterized by a low glyeemic index.

The glyeemic index of the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention is typically in the range of from 0 to 40 and preferably in the range of 10 to 30 (with glucose having a glyeemic index of 100 as a reference).

(f) Additional health benefits

The use of one or more prebiotic fibers in the present invention contributes to a healthy gastrointestinal tract of the consumer. That is, the growth of beneficial probiotic bacteria Is advantageously supported by the consumption of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. Additionally, consumption of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention contributes to the formation of short chain fatty acids in the gastrointestinal tract of the consumer. These acids are advantageous in reducing pH of the gastrointestinal tract and especially the colon in an advantageous manner. This leads to improved uptake of Ca and Mg and to a reduction of the risk of colon cancer. Further benefits are increased faecal bulk, reduced transit time and softer stools.

Yet another beneficial health effect is the reduced cariogenicity of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. In fact, there is reduced cariogenicity not only in comparison with sugar but also in comparison with other sugar replacement compositions known from the state of the art. Said reduced cariogenicity is accomplished in particular in those embodiments of the present invention, wherein neither inulin nor oligofructose are contained.

4.6. Uses 4.6.1. Consumer Product

The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention may be used as sugar replacers for the end consumer. For such applications, it is advantageous to provide a sugar replacement composition in accordance with, the present invention, which has about the same sweetness as that of sugar. Local consume habits should be considered in this respect. For instance, in many European countries, bakery recipes are provided wherein the amount of sugar is indicated on a weight basis. For such countries, it is preferred to provide a sugar replacement composition of the present invention, which exhibits the same sweetness as that of sugar on a weight basis.

Conversely, in the United States, many bakery recipes are provided with volume-based indications for the amounts of ingredients. In view of such local preferences, it is also preferred to provide the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention having a sweetness about the same as the sweetness of sugar on a volume basis. Such products may be marketed in the United States and similar countries.

Of course, it is also possible to offer a reduced sweetness product to end consumers. In this case, the degree of sweetness should be clearly indicated on the product label.

For end consumer use, it is particularly advantageous to provide a sugar replacement composition of the present invention, which is capable of achieving as many functional properties of sugar as possible.

4.6.2, Bakery Products

The sugar replacement composition of the present invention may be used not only by end consumer when, making bakery products, but also by commercial producers of bakery producers. In both instances, it is vital to provide a sugar replacement composition exhibiting excellent structural effects and browning effects,

4.6.3. Ice Cream and Sorbet

When using the sugar replacement composition of the present invention for the manufacture of ice creams and sorbets, it is essential to use a sugar replacement composition that provides excellent structural effects to accomplish satisfactory viscosity of the ice cream and sorbet to be produced.

4.6,4. Chocolate

The following ingredients are typically used as essential ingredients in the manufacture of chocolate products according to the present invention:

• Cocoa mass

• Cocoa butter

• Emulsifying agent

• Sugar replacement composition of the present invention

Cocoa mass (sometimes referred to as cocoa liquor) can be of any commercially used type.

Cocoa butter can. also be of any commercially used type.

According to one embodiment of the present application, it is possible to replace the cocoa butter by another source of fat such as partially hydrogenated vegetable oils.

The emulsifying agent can also be selected among all commercially used types. A typical example is lecithin and especially soy lecithin.

In addition to the above essential ingredients, it is furthermore possible to use additional optional ingredients, for instance to modify taste or organoleptic properties There is no limitation on such optional further ingredients (except that no sugar alcohol is to be used). Frequently used optional ingredients are milk or milk powder, vanilla flavor, salt, nuts, etc.

The following table characterizes typical amounts of the essential ingredients (in weight%):

Ingredient Typical Range Preferred Range More preferred

Range

Cocoa mass 10 - 80 20 - 60 30 - 50

Cocoa butter 6.5 - 16.5 8.5 - 14.5 10 - 13 Emulsifying agent 0.05 - 0.9 0.1 - 0.8 0.15 - 0.6

Sugar replacement 18 - 78 28 - 68 38 - 58

composition of present

invention

Chocolate is made according to the following process of the present invention:

In a first step, essential ingredients and optionally present further ingredients are provided.

Ingredients may be provided separately or in the form of pre-mixes. According to one embodiment, emulsifying agent and/or part of the cocoa butter are not added in the first step but only at a later stage. It is preferred to add the emulsifying agent at a later step, namely after conching, Even more preferably, the entire amount of lecithin as well as a part of the cocoa butter are added later, after the conching step.

In a next step, the ingredients are mixed. Mixing can take place simultaneously or sequentially, wherein, the relative order of mixing the individual ingredients is not particularly limited. It is advantageous to mix the ingredients simultaneously. Mixing is typically done at elevated temperatures. A preferred temperature range is from. 30 to 60 °C and more preferably from 40 to 50 °C.

The mixture or the initially employed, ingredients is/are optionally refined, i.e. milled or grinded to reduce particle size to thereby improve organoleptic properties. Of course, no grinding is necessary if the ingredients are provided already in the form of fine particles, typically having a particle size of less than. 50 pm. Any conventionally used refinement device can be employed, such as the Exakt SOS 3-rol. The temperature of the refiner rolls is advantageously set to a temperature of about 32-38°C, more preferably 34-36°C. Refinement can be performed one r more times. Number of refinement steps (e.g., one step), distance between the refiner rolls (e.g. 2- 1 ) and the speed of the refiner rolls (e.g. 400 rpm) are preferably chosen such that the volume weighted average diameter is preferably in the range of from 7 to 20 pm and more preferably 10 to 15 μηι. The 50th percentile, i.e. where 50% of the particles is smaller than this value, is preferably in the range of from 4 to 12 pm and more preferably 6 to 10 pm. The total refining time is preferably 5 to 45 min, more preferably 10 to 30 min and most preferably 20 min. Subsequently, the mixture is conched, i.e.. refined under the influence of heating and grinding forces. The duration of the conching operation can have a strong influence on the quality of the resulting chocolate. Typical conching durations are from 60 to 720 min, preferably 180 to 300 min. The conching temperature is typically in the range of from 40 °C to 90 °C, more preferably 40 °C to 80°C. In a. particularly preferred embodiment, conching is performed in different stages at step-wise increased temperatures. For instance, the conching procedure may comprise 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 or more steps. Advantageously, the first step is carried out at a low temperature, for instance a temperature in the range of from. 40 °C to 50 °C, whereas the temperature in the subsequent steps is gradually increased, for instance by 3-15 °C per step, preferably 5-10°C per step. When manufacturing chocolate with the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention, it is preferred to increase the temperature in the conching process as slowly as possible. Preferably, temperature at each conching step is maintained at a fixed temperature and temperature increases are effected at transition points between steps. The duration of individual steps may typically range from 15 min to 120 min; it is preierably in the range of from 20 min to 100 min. It is furthermore preferred to reduce the amount of lecithin in the beginning of the conching process as much as possible.

After conching, emulsifying agent such as lecithin and/or part of the cocoa butter may be added to and mixed with the warm mixture (unless all these ingredients have already been, added, at an earlier stage). The mixing conditions are not particularly restricted. Typical conditions are a temperature in the range from 40 to 50 °C, preferably 43 to 47 °C, mixing speed in the range from 1200 to 3600 rpm., more preferably 2000 to 2800 rpm.. Duration of mixing is preferably in the range of from 15 to 45 min. It is furthermore preferred to carry out a first part of the mixing procedure under shear conditions and the second part under mixing conditions.

Subsequently, the warm mixture is preferably tempered. This process includes application of a controlled program of heating/cooling/agitation steps to thereby ensure formation of small crystals of the desired fat crystal form. There is no particular limitation on the tempering treatment. It is preferred that tempering is carried out such that the temperindex (Tl), as measured on an Aasted Mikroverk Chocometer, is in the range of from 3.3 to 5.2, preferably in the range of from 3.5 to 5.0. This parameter is derived from the slope of the plateau in the temper curve. The value of the slope should be around 0 (slope »0: undertempered chocolate, slope « 0: overtempered chocolate). It is furthermore preferred to carry out tempering such that the chocolate tempering unit (CTIJ) is greater than 20' °C, preferably greater than 23 °C, especially in case of dark chocolate. The CTU parameter gives the temperature at which the plateau occurs in the temper curve. Higher values are associated with the presence of more stable crystals (β ν crystals).

After tempering, the chocolate is typically cooled and brought into the desired shape.

When manufacturing a chocolate with the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention, it is preferable to use a sugar replacement composition of the present invention having a low moisture content. Preferably, the moisture content is 3.5 weight% or less, more preferably 3 weight% or less, most preferably 2.5 weight% or less.

It is furthermore preferred to manufacture the chocolate of the invention such that it exhibits a favourable melting profile. The melting profile of the inventive chocolate can be evaluated 24 hours after tempering by using a TA Instruments Q 1000 Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC). The sample should be subjected to the following time-temperature profile:

Equilibration at 22°C

Isothermal for 5 min

- Heating to 70°C at 5°C/min

Onset temperature (i.e. start of melting), a maximum temperature and an offset temperature

(i.e. end of melting) are preferably in the following ranges:

Onset temperature 2-8 °C lower than maximum temperature, preferably 4-7 °C lower than maximum temperature;

- Maximum temperature 30-36 °C, preferably 31-35 °C;

Offset temperature 1 to 4 °C higher than maximum temperature, preferably 1 to 3 °C higher than maximum temperature.

The texture of the inventive chocolate can be measured at 20°C, 24 hours after tempering. A penetration test can be performed by using an Instron 5942 texture analyzer equipped with a SOON load cell. In this test, the chocolate bars are penetrated with a needle-shaped probe at a constant speed of 2 mm/s and to a penetration depth of 5 mm. The maximum force that the probe experiences during the measurement is a measure for the hardness of the inventive chocolate. The maximum force of the inventive chocolate is preferably in the range of from. 5 to 25 N, more preferably in the range of from 7 to 20 N and most preferably in the range of from 10 to 15 N.

4.6.5. Other Desserts

Mousses, creams and related desserts can. also be manufactured using the sugar replacement composition of the present invention. In this case, it is advantageous to select a sugar replacement composition of the present invention with excellent structural characteristics to optimize the viscosity of the product.

4.6.6. Non-Sweet Foods

The sugar replacement compositions of the present invention may also find application in. non-sweet foods. This may be advantageous, for instance, in view of the structural properties of the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention. Possible applications are, for instance, salad dressings and sauces for readymade foods. For such uses in non-sweet foods, it may be particularly advantageous to employ sugar replacement compositions of the present invention, which exhibit only a reduced sweetness in comparison with the sweetness of sugar, e.g. a sweetness of from 10% to 70% of the sweetness of sugar.

4.6.7. Beverages

When using the sugar replacement compositions of the present invention in. beverages, the structural characteristics and browning effects of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention are of less relevance, instead, the main focus of the sugar replacement composition will be on its sweetening properties and its health benefits.

4.6.8. Chewing Gum ami related Sweets

Depending on the type of chewing gum/sweet to be manufactured, structural characteristics of the sugar replacement composition of the present invention, may or may not be of relevance. The above-mentioned health benefits are certainly advantageous. Sweetness will in most applications be of importance, too.

4.7. Example A sugar replacement composition of the present invention was manufactured by mixing the following ingredients in the amounts specified below:

Table I Com osition of inventive su ar re lacement com osition used in the exam le

The sweetness of the resulting sugar replacement composition is approximately the same as that of sugar on. a weight basis. The resulting sugar replacement composition was tested by incorporating it into chocolate by means of the following procedure:

A dark chocolate was prepared on a 5-kg scale. The following ingredients were used: the above sugar replacement composition, cocoa liquor of Valrhona, cocoa butter and soy lecithin. The composition of the final chocolate is given in Table 2. Taking into account a fat content of 54% for the cocoa liquor (estimated value) the chocolate below has a fat content of 33.6%.

Table 2 Composition of the dark chocolate

A first step in the production process of the chocolate is mixing of the sugar replacer and the cocoa liquor in a VEMA BM30/20 variomatic planetary mixer. Considering an estimated fat content of 54% for the cocoa liquor, the fat content of the mixed and refined product was 24.5%. The ingredients were mixed for 20 mill at elevated temperature (45 °C).

In a second step the mixture was refined, in which the size of the dispersed particles (sugar replacer, cocoa particles) is reduced to acceptable values from a sensory point of view (absence of sandiness). An Exakt 80S 3-rol refiner was used. The temperature of the refiner rolls was 35°C. In order to achieve the appropriate reduction in particle size, the mixture was refined, one time wherein a distance between the refiner rolls of 2-1 and a speed of the refiner rolls of 400 rpm were used. The total refining time was 20 min.

A third step in the production of the dark chocolate is conching. The conching procedure was done by using a Biihler ELK'olino conche. The total conching time was 240 min, and covered the following steps:

1. 30 min dry conching, 1200 rpm., temperature: 45°C, mixing mode

2. 30 min dry conching, 1200 rpm, temperature: 50°C, mixing mode

3. 30 min dry conching, 1200 rpm, temperature: 55°C, mixing mode

4. 30 min dry conching, 1200 rpm, temperature: 60°C, mixing mode

5. 30 min dry conching, 1200 rpm., temperature: 65 °C, shear mode

6. 90 min dry conching, 1200 rpm., temperature: 70°C, shear mode

In the first two hours agglomerates were formed. They gradually disappeared in the final two hours of conching leading to the formation of a more pasty product. No problems were encountered during conching.

In a next step the lecithin, and the remaining cocoa butter were added to the product in the conche and liquefaction was performed according to the following program:

1. 15 min, 2400 rpm., temperature: 45°C, shear mode

2. 1.5 min, 2400 rpm, temperature: 45°C, mixing mode

A next step in the production process is tempering. The chocolate was hand tempered on a marble plate. The tempered, chocolate was inserted into molds and cooled for 60 min at 11 °C in. temperature-controlled Chocolate World cooling cabinets. Also the relative humidity is recorded in these cabinets. The chocolate bars (dimensions: 100 mm length, 24 mm width and 10 mm high) and chocolate pieces were then dem.oI.ded and stored at 20°C. During cooling the chocolate bars contracted well and no problems were seen during demoiding, indicative of a good temper degree.

The following results were observed:

Moisture content

The moisture content of the chocolate after conching was evaluated by using Karl-Fisher titration. The measurements were done in triplicate. The moisture content of the chocolate was 1.1 ± 0.1 %, which is a relatively high value. For dark chocolates usually a moisture content of 0.5% or less is found.

Particle size distribetien

The following representative parameters were derived to describe the particle size distribution:

D43 (μπι): volume-weighted average diameter

10% (μηΥ): 10th percentile: 10% of the particles is smaller than this value

D5()% (μηι); 50th percentile: 50% of the particles is smaller than this value

D90% (μη ): 90th percentile: 90% of the particles is smaller than this value

Span (-): relative width of the distribution, calculated as (D90% - D10%) / D50%

The values of these parameters for the inventive sample can be found in Table 3. The D90%- value of the chocolate was rather low (30.0 ± 0.2 μηι) meaning that 90% of the particles had a diameter smaller than 30 μιη. This is an acceptable value from a sensory point of view. Furthermore, the inventive chocolate showed a similar particle size distribution as the reference chocolate. The biggest differences between these two chocolates were seen in the D5( ) %-value (highest for the inventive sample) and D90%-value (highest for the reference sample).

Table 3 Parameters derived from the particle size distribution of the inventive sample and a reference sample

Flow behavior

After conching the flow behavior of the chocolate was evaluated according to the 1CA analytical method 46 (2000) by using a TA Instruments AR2000 rheometer, equipped with concentric cylinders. The temperature was set to 40°C. After a pre- shear step (15 min at 5/s) the sample was subjected to shear rates varying between 2/s and 50/s. The obtained data were fit to the Casson model and the Casson. viscosity (Pa.s) and Casson yield value (Pa) were calculated. The Casson viscosity and yield value are given in Table 4. In this table the values for Casson viscosity and yield value for a few premium chocolates are given as well. Despite the higher moisture content of the inventive chocolate, the yield value is low compared to other premium chocolates.

Table 4 Casson viscosity and Casson yield value of the inventive sample after conching (T

Tempering

After conching the chocolate was hand tempered on a marble table. The temper degree was evaluated immediately after tempering by using an Aasted Mikroverk Chocometer.

For an Aasted Mikroverk Chocometer the temperindex (TI) of a well-tempered chocolate should be in the range 3.5-5 (TI < 3.5: undertempered chocolate; TI > 5-5.5: overtempered chocolate). This parameter is derived from the slope of the plateau in the temper curve. The value of the slope should be around 0 (slope »0: undertempered chocolate, slope « 0: overtempered chocolate). A final output parameter of the Chocometer is the chocolate tempering unit (CTU). This parameter gives the temperature at which the plateau occurs in the temper curve. Higher values are associated with the presence of more stable crystals (β ν crystals). For dark chocolate this value should be higher than 23°C. The temper index for the chocolate of the present example was in the range 3.5-5 and the CTU (chocolate tempering unit) was higher than 24°C indicating that the chocolate was well-tempered.

Melting The melting profile of the inventive chocolate was evaluated 24 hours after tempering by using a TA Instruments Q1000 Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC). The sample was subjected to the following time- temperature profile:

- Equilibration at 22°C

- Isothermal for 5 min

- Heating to 70°C at 5°C/min

Onset temperature (i.e. start of melting), a maximum temperature and an offset temperature (i.e. end of melting) and also the melting enthalpy are given in Table 5. Both the temperature range of the melting peak and the high maximum temperature are typical for β ν crystals, the desired crystals in tempered chocolate. The melting enthalpy that is related to the amount of crystals, which are present in the sample, is sufficiently high for a dark chocolate.

Table 5 Melting parameters during heating of the inventive chocolate at 5°C7min

Texture

The texture of the chocolate was measured at 20°C, 24 hours after tempering. A penetration test was performed by using an Instron 5942 texture analyzer equipped with a SOON load cell. The chocolate bars were penetrated with a needle-shaped probe at a constant speed of 2 mm/s and to a penetration depth of 5 mm. The maximum force that the probe experienced during the measurement is a measure for the hardness of the inventive chocolate. The maximum, force of the inventive chocolate was 12.9 ± 0.3 N. This is a typical value for a well-tempered dark chocolate.