An injection of fruit in the cereal aisle

An Israeli company aims to transform the cereal aisle by using fruit instead of sugar.

Gat Foods launched Fruitlift, a fruit-based ingredient that can replace refined sugar in breakfast cereals.

It works by replacing sugar with a fruit base added to the flour mix of apple, apple-orange or apple-mango-citrus, or it can be applied with a fruit coating sprayed into the coating drum, which can be apple, pineapple, citrus or lemon.

Michal Katzir Emek, international marketing director for Israel-based Gat Foods, said much of the fruit used in the new product comes from local sources.

He said it has just emerged from the research and development phase and hopes to find interested companies all over the world including the U.S.

“Fruitlift is new being lunched after extensive R&D process, including a successful round of initial trials in a UK extrusion pilot lab,” he said April 15. “At this point we are in contact with a few companies, interested in using Fruitlift for their cereal products.”

The company said in its press release, “cereal has come under fire as a commodity that is perceived as overly high in sugar, artificial stabilizers, and other less-desired ingredients, and is increasingly being rebuffed by health-concerned consumers.”

Emek said, “Fruitlift is a solution developed for cereal manufacturers to blend with their own flour mix during the extrusion production process. Each Fruitlift solution provides a different mild fruity taste, depending on the chosen formulation and fruit. Available fruits are: Apple, citrus, banana, pineapple. Taste could also be neutral and combined with the manufacturer’s brand signature flavor.”

He said sugar can make up 15 percent to as high as 40 percent of cereals, and that has cereal lovers – especially parents of small children – concerned about lowering sugar in take.

Additionally, cereal companies are concerned about sugar, as the FDA’s Nutrition Facts label changes Jan. 1, 2020, to reflect larger type on calories and a new area for added sugars.

“So far, the reaction [from consumers] that we are getting are great,” Emek said. “Fruitlift has garnered a lot of interest especially from cereals manufacturers who have expressed to us that the Fruitlift solution is relevant to their category and responds to their needs and challenges.”

 

Greg Johnson is Director of Media Development for Blue Book Services