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International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. (IFF) announces the launch of CoolTek™ , a high-intensity cooling technology that uses proprietary molecules developed through extensive research into human cold perception.
IFF began developing proprietary cooling molecules in the mid to late 1990s. Historically, the only way to achieve a cooling sensation was with the use of mint or menthol. CoolTek technology is not mint-derived, although it enhances mint flavor systems. It is also ideal for non-mint flavor systems, such as fruit, dairy, indulgent, and savory flavors. The cooling sensation lasts and builds—without a menthol “burn,” aroma, or flavor and without impacting other flavors in the system.
“IFF's CoolTek technology has been a global success story and a product that is helping IFF win in the marketplace,” says Kevin Field, Vice President Global Business Development, Sweet Products. “Not only has CoolTek been extremely successful in confectionery products and chewing gum, these cooling compounds have helped generate new product lines like the breath films that have become so popular.”
"Major companies are working on products using these cooling compounds,” said Tom De Biase, Director Global Technical Business Development—Sweet Products. “These cooling materials are very unique because unlike a flavor, where it can be hard to realize exactly what a customer wants when they ask for a ripe strawberry, it's very easy to measure the amount of cooling. When you place a candy or film in your mouth, it's easy to tell if it's cold or not. The fact that we can actually measure the cooling effect has had a fair amount to do with our success.”
Another factor in CoolTek's success is the ability to control the release of the cooling—both the amount and when it is experienced—depending on the end product. This ability to provide measurable results directly affects consumer sales as evidenced by the fact that this new category of “intense” products is growing at close to double digits. De Biase points out that products using CoolTek actually deliver on their promises of making breath ice cold or fresh and often exceed consumer expectations.
This technology was originally marketed in the confectionery category, where it was an immediate success. In fact, demand in this category was so strong that IFF did not market CoolTek in other categories until a capacity expansion in 2002. Ton Mesters, Vice President Global Business Development, Beverages, then began an initiative to introduce CoolTek technology in the beverage category.
June Montanari, Global Marketing Manager, Beverages and her team in North America created a customized CoolTek promotion to demonstrate IFF's capabilities in cooling flavor technology to beverage customers. CoolTek is used in several types of product concepts—fortified flavored water, iced tea, kids' juice, and an energy drink—and presented to the customer in a CoolTek cooler.
Because the specific needs of the beverage market vary by country, the beverage teams in each region have customized the flavors and beverage concepts they present to their customers. For example, the Latin America marketing team included orange and lemon powdered drinks and a grapefruit isotonic sport drink in their region's promotion. South Brunswick Senior Food Technologist Joy Merritt spent time in Europe helping the beverage team there to customize the flavors for their market. The resulting promotion features only the Nature Identical version of CoolTek in iced tea, juice, flavored water, and an energy drink.
Future promotions led by Kathy Moreau, Global Category Marketing Manager, Sweet Goods, are planned. Ray Guerry, Vice President, Applications Technology—Fragrance, and his team are also exploring the use of CoolTek in fragrance products.“We believe this is not a niche business that will go away soon,” De Biase said. “The search for new cooling materials is an ongoing project in R&D. We have a staff constantly working on synthesizing and evaluating new materials.”
CoolTek is a totally flexible technology that can be adjusted to create the perfect flavor profile. IFF works with customers to develop the right formulation for any product, in either liquid or dry form.
Tom De Biase
E-mail: mhiff( "tom.debiase","" )
E-mail: mhiff( "brian.granger","" )
IFF is the world's leading creator and manufacturer of flavors and fragrances used in a wide variety of consumer products—from fine fragrances and toiletries, to soaps, detergents and other household products, to beverages and food products. IFF is dedicated to The Pursuit of Excellence in every area of its business, using knowledge, creativity, innovation and technology to continually provide customers with the highest quality products and service and superior consumer understanding.
IFF has sales, manufacturing and creative facilities in 37 countries worldwide and annual sales exceeding $1.8 billion. For more information, please visit our Web site at www.iff.com.