Flavors: Everything You Want to Know
An ingredient or a blend of ingredients comprised primarily of natural and/or artificial aromatic substances i.e. aroma chemicals (found in nature or not), plant extracts, essential oils, reaction products, etc.) recognized by the FDA as GRAS (generally recognized as safe).
Flavors can be simple or complex mixtures which are used in finished food/beverage/pharmaceutical products to impart, modify, enhance the flavor of choice or to mask undesirable, off notes.
Functions-Masking & Modifying
Masking agents can be added to hide an off-taste in products that include ingredients such as soy, vitamins, or herbs. Modifying agents do not conceal an off-taste but instead change the product to make it palatable--removing bitterness, for example. (www.niemagazine.com, January/February 2004)
Liquids (oil or water soluble), Emulsions, Pastes or Powders. All Natural, WONF's (natural with other natural flavors) , N&A (natural & artificial), Nature Identical (for Europe) and Artificial.
- Flavor formulas are typically between 5-50 ingredients.
- Use levels are most often between 0.01% - 1.0%.
- They are compounded in a lab between 50-30 grams and then based on our customers desire to purchase, scale up in manufacturing; 50-1000(s) of lbs.
Natural Flavors versus Artificial Flavors
"Natural Flavors" are preparations or single substances acceptable for human consumption obtained exclusively by physical processes from vegetable and sometimes animal raw materials either in their natural state or naturally isolated from the natural ingredient. "Artificial Flavors" are substances chemically isolated from aromatic raw materials or obtained synthetically. They may or may not be chemically identical to substances found in nature.
For more information on labeling flavors, refer to the 21 Code of Federal Regulations 101.22 Foods; labeling of spices, flavorings, colorings and chemical preservatives.