On March 21, the formulation of group standards for “Low GI (Glycemic Index) Food Evaluation Standards” was officially launched. Under the guidance of the China National Light Industry Council, more than 60 units and enterprises participated, and the preparation is planned to be completed this year.
It will become a new starting point for the standardized development of low-GI foods in China. At the same time, the recent low GI market is also very lively.
Low-GI Food Brands Are Favored By Capital.
Many brands have launched new low-GI products or products with low-GI logos. Even prepared dishes are moving towards low GI. Dingdong Maicai has launched five pre-prepared vegetable supply chain plans, including “low-carbon/low GI pre-prepared dishes.”
Jingdong Supermarket has also been making frequent moves recently. Not only took the lead in organizing the formulation of group standards but also created a service platform for the “Low GI Food Digital Economy” and launched a self-operated area. JD.com provides consumers with low-GI foods that meet the standards.
In fact, the concept of low GI is no stranger to the Chinese market. Low GI has been in the public eye since the early 20th century. Since its development, several rounds of changes have occurred in the low GI diet’s requirements. Now gradually evolved into a healthier way of life. Today’s consumers not only want to control sugar scientifically but also want to indulge in carbohydrates. It promotes the market to force technological innovation to meet the newly upgraded demand for sugar control.
In May last year, the National Health and Medical Commission’s Announcement No. 2 in 2022 officially listed sugarcane polyphenols declared by Shanghai Proveco Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (the Chinese subsidiary of Australia’s TPM Proveco Group) as a “new food raw material.” As a new food raw ingredient, sugarcane polyphenols have been popular in overseas markets as raw materials for reducing GI.
How Is The Low IG Market In China?
In 2019, the “Measurement Method for Food Glycemic Index” was released, and China’s low GI market ushered in new opportunities. According to relevant reports from Nanfang Daily, the market size of my country’s low-GI health food will reach 176.2 billion yuan in 2021, with an annual growth rate of over 10%.
Currently, most products follow the concept, and consumer awareness is slowly being established. At the same time, China’s low GI industry is still in its infancy, lacking unified and standardized food labeling and standardized market supervision. The subsequent market development has not kept up.
With the gradual standardization of industry standards this year, the low GI market will again usher in the heat. Various enterprises and brands are also accelerating their deployment to seize the first-mover advantage of low GI categories.
AMX, a brand under Yili, has launched AMX 0 sucrose yogurt with a low GI label. Xu Jinhuan has launched a low GI frivolous Yun Zhi Zhi ice cream series. Want Want’s health food brand Fixbody launched a low GI chia seed multi-grain biscuit aimed at the office afternoon tea scene. Lushou, a brand focusing on weight management, has launched a low GI prebiotic protein bar, etc.
Behind this wave of enthusiasm, in addition to the promotion of industry participants, the deeper opportunity lies in the change of consumer demand and the outbreak of new demand.
How Has Consumers Demand Changed?
At first, overseas, the concept of glycemic index was born to solve the dietary problems of diabetic patients. A low GI diet has become the basic treatment plan for certain populations, such as diabetics, overweight, and obese.
Later, it spread to China, and low-GI food became a product closely related to weight management. For young people, many brands in China have launched meal replacements and energy bars with related concepts.
Today, China’s population is aging, and the onset of chronic diseases is decreasing yearly, making the public pay more and more attention to health preservation and anti-aging. People want to achieve the purpose of chronic disease prevention and anti-glycation through scientific sugar control.
The comprehensive promotion of a number of national sugar reduction and control policies is combined with the popularization of professional dietary nutrition knowledge. In the minds of consumers, the GI value closely related to “sugar control” has become one of the important reference indicators when choosing food. The concept of low GI is thus inclined to a wider group of people and older circles, and low GI foods have thus ushered in a broader market.
What Are The Problems In The IG Market?
But many consumers reflect that the low GI diet is healthy but not tasty enough.
For example, low-GI staple foods made of raw materials such as crude fiber grains, nuts, and chia seeds have problems such as poor taste and insufficient nutrition. Consumers are less willing to repurchase such products.
In order to capture more consumers, brands are also trying their best to make delicious low-GI products. Low GI products gradually expand from basic and single staple food to bakery, snacks, beverages, yogurt, ice cream, and other categories. The brand keeps innovating, breaking the inherent impression of “unhealthy,” integrating the low GI concept into delicious food and beverages, and leading consumers to explore more functions and scenarios.
What Is Sugarcane Polyphenols?
Sugarcane polyphenol is a new raw material with high biological activity and pure natural plant extraction.
What is the manufacturing process of sugarcane polyphenols powder?
Sugarcane, as raw material, removes excess sugar and salt through pressing, filtering, and extracting to get sugarcane molasses at last.
Then use, water and ethanol as solvents for extraction. Organic synthetic solvents such as petroleum ether, ethyl acetate, and acetone are not used to avoid residues.
Finally, through processes such as filtration, concentration, and drying, the powder or liquid sugarcane polyphenols are obtained.
Application Status of Sugarcane Polyphenols
As an enterprise that promotes the declaration of new raw materials and introduces sugarcane polyphenols into China, TPM Proweike is also at the forefront of the commercialization of sugarcane polyphenols. Two products have been launched, Phytolin® Phytolin® in liquid form and Polynol® in powder form.
We can learn from TPM Prowei that in a more mature and regulated market like Australia, in addition to the GI test required to ensure that the GI value is less than 55, the GI Foundation will also conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the product. The product can obtain the low GI certification mark if its nutritional value benefits human health.
In contrast, in the Chinese market, many traditional low-GI products lower the GI value by “abandoning” carbohydrates. Without the “happiness” of carbohydrates, it is difficult for consumers to insist on eating, and long-term non-intake of carbohydrates will also bring various health risks.
Therefore, controlling sugar does not mean rejecting carbohydrates. The future development focus of low GI food is not only to reduce the GI value but, more importantly, it can make the nutritional intake of consumers more balanced and comprehensive and help the body absorb better carbohydrates. It is also why TPM Proweico introduces the low GI raw material that has been successfully verified to be healthy in overseas markets, sugarcane polyphenols, into the Chinese market and accelerates its commercialization.
What are the core benefits of sugarcane polyphenols?
- The triple mechanism, sugar control from the source, to achieve the unabated taste and sugar control.
In the research and development of low GI products, adding sugar substitutes to replace part or all of the sucrose to reduce the total GI value is the main practice in the industry at present.
However, some sugar substitutes, such as sugar alcohols, are likely to cause adverse reactions. For example, diarrhea and flatulence. So, they are unsuitable for large quantities. At the same time, sugar substitutes have certain defects in terms of taste and flavor. Even some sugar substitutes are still controversial about their safety. Consumers expect more balanced nutrition and safer low-GI products.
In response to such problems, some low-GI products have begun to reduce the GI value of the product through a more scientific sugar control mechanism: inhibiting the enzyme activity in the body and reducing the effect of carbohydrate absorption and utilization. However, most of these raw materials can only be targeted for inhibition, and they need to be compounded to achieve a better sugar control effect during application.
Different from the single sugar control mechanism of other raw materials, sugarcane polyphenols can simultaneously inhibit the activity of α-glucosidase and α-amylase in the small intestine, thereby slowing down the decomposition of carbohydrates in the digestive tract. And reduce the absorption rate of monosaccharides such as glucose and fructose to achieve the effect of controlling sugar in the whole link.
Therefore, sugarcane polyphenols have good application prospects in many fields, such as weight management, anti-glycation, and blood sugar control. Adding sugarcane polyphenols can directly reduce the GI value of food without reducing sucrose and carbohydrates, making the food and beverages with high GI “transform” into low GI products. This ingredient can taste slightly sweet but not astringent and has no bad flavor, allowing consumers to eat “carbohydrates” happily without burden.
- Good stability with wide application.
After several years of education, the gut-related sugar control mechanism of solid drinks and tablets has been generally understood and accepted by consumers concerned about weight management. The needs of consumers have gradually become more diversified, and the market expects the emergence of various types and categories of products. Sugarcane polyphenols can fully meet these needs.
First of all, in terms of taste, sugarcane polyphenols have the advantage of a slightly sweet but not astringent taste. At the same time, in terms of physical and chemical properties, we learned that the activity of some traditional raw materials is limited by heat resistance, and the product form is mainly compressed tablets. Sugarcane polyphenols showed good acid and alkali resistance. It still exhibits better activity in an environment of pH 2~9 and can be widely used in food and beverage systems. It also has strong heat resistance and can withstand the high-temperature process of bakery products above 200 °C.
Because of taste and application advantages, sugarcane polyphenols in food and beverage can be described as “comfortable.” At present, some Chinese brands have seized new opportunities and developed low-GI products around sugarcane polyphenols.
Yuanqi Forest uses sugarcane polyphenols to launch a new sugar-free tea series of burning tea. Indie Pure, a “makeup and food research brand,” recently launched an upgraded version of the 3.0MAX anti-sugar tablet. By adding TPM Proveco’s phentrin® sugarcane polyphenols, the carbon-blocking and sugar-blocking mechanism is three-dimensionally optimized.
TPM Proveco has strategically cooperated with Bowery to launch the “Sugarcane Polyphenols” small Q bottle series. The product covers Houshengyuan Drink for weight management and Shuiguang Drink for oral beauty. As well as the dextran drink for immune health, it opens a new era of oral beauty drink Q-bottle “adding phenol.”
Is Sugarcane Polyphenols Banned?
Overseas, sugarcane extracts have been used as food ingredients in many countries.
- The European Union approved using sugarcane polyphenols as food raw materials in 2012.
- The United States lists it as a “generally recognized as safe (GRAS)” substance.
- Australia and New Zealand manage it as a common food.
- The Taiwan region of China has also used sugarcane polyphenol extract as a food raw material for a long time.
The research on the function and application of sugarcane polyphenols is also far ahead of China.
- Reduce the GI value so that there is no burden to eating sugar.
Sugarcane polyphenols are rich in stable polyphenols, slightly sweet, and not astringent. This ingredient can reduce the GI value of pre-packaged products to below 55, transforming traditional high-sugar products into low-GI healthy food and beverages. It can also help reduce the GI value of meals and control sugar and anti-glycation.
In 2009, the Australian brand CSR launched LoGiCane® Low GI Cane Suger by adding sucrose polyphenols. This product has become the world’s first low GI product with the concept of pure natural whole sucrose certified by GIF and has been on sale for 13 years. Brands in New Zealand, India, and Hong Kong have also successively launched sucrose products with low GI values by adding sugarcane polyphenols.
Chocolate, as a high-sugar and high-calorie food in the traditional concept, makes many consumers “love and hate.” Australian brand FYTO THE FROG has created the world’s first low-GI children’s milk chocolate with all-sucrose formula. The GI value of this children’s chocolate is reduced by adding the CP combination of sugarcane polyphenols and sugarcane fiber. At the same time, the calories are reduced by half, which is natural, healthy, and delicious.
Sugarcane polyphenols can also make black chocolate more delicious. Swiss brand ALPESD’OR has launched DORPHENOLS, a low-GI black chocolate containing sugarcane polyphenols. The GI value is only 44. The rich polyphenols can also bring antioxidant effects.
Due to its ability to help slowly raise blood sugar, sugarcane polyphenols can be used as a special raw material for diabetics to meet the needs of specific groups of people to control blood sugar.
For example, the Vietnamese brand Bibica launched a series of low-GI, high-end mooncake products. By adding sugarcane polyphenols, diabetics can eat mooncakes with confidence. Russian brand iCanCook has launched a series of convenient flavored sauces containing sugarcane polyphenols. The product is blessed with sugarcane polyphenols, making this 100% pure natural, convenient flavored sauce a low-GI food and making the staple food a healthy, high-quality carbohydrate by mixing noodles and rice with the sauce.
Sugarcane polyphenols can also be used in other bakery products, such as muffins, digestive biscuits, etc.
On the other hand, sugarcane polyphenols can also provide consumers with a more sustainable and long-lasting energy supply. Russian brand Yoo Go has capitalized on this property with an energy protein bar.
- Anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidation, high-efficiency boost function.
As polyphenols, sugarcane polyphenols have important functions of anti-oxidation and anti-inflammation. Because it is rich in stable small-molecule compound polyphenols extracted from sugarcane and easily absorbed and utilized by the human body, sugarcane polyphenols can effectively scavenge free radicals and have super cellular antioxidant activity. At the same time, polyphenols can inhibit pro-inflammatory cytokines, and related experiments have proved that sugarcane polyphenols can help fight inflammation, obesity, and other diseases.
Therefore, overseas brands use their natural advantages to develop various innovative products when applying sugarcane polyphenols.
Engage has launched a pure natural professional e-sports energy drink. Sugarcane polyphenols can help remove free radicals in the body and provide lasting energy for the brain. Russian brand TaVie has launched an anti-aging dietary supplement rich in bioactive. While the product helps consumers supplement nutritional elements, adding sugarcane polyphenols enhances the effects of sugar control, weight loss, and optimization of metabolism.
It can be seen that sugarcane polyphenols, as a plant-extracted new food raw material, reduce the GI value of food and beverages, and also have the functional advantages of anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidation, and can be widely used in various foods and beverages.
Looking at overseas markets, countries such as Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Japan have begun to mark GI values on food packaging to facilitate consumers to choose. Despite the initial enthusiasm, the Chinese market has room for improvement in domestic market awareness and acceptance of low GI.
Fortunately, favorable signals are constantly being released. Once the new standard is launched, the domestic low GI market will become more standardized. At the same time, more rational and professional consumers also demand that low GI products can withstand scrutiny. Therefore, building a strong product force is still the foundation for brands.
Under the health trend of sugar control, the low GI market still has great potential, but the era of the concept of “playing” has passed.
The wide application cases of sugarcane polyphenols also show that promoting new raw materials and technologies is significant to the innovation of low GI products. With the gradual start of low GI in the domestic market, we look forward to seeing more professional and scientific solutions to jointly promote the track to a new situation.
If you have any demand for supplement ingredients, welcome to choose Nutri Avenue to be your business partner. We have 1000+ fresh bulk raw ingredients to support your need.