USA – Bunge Ltd.’s North American operating arm, Bunge North America has introduced pulse based, lentil functional flour to its portfolio of clean label ingredients.

The new product is said to be rich in protein, can act as a substitute for modified starches and provides a range of nutritional benefits.

Made with non-GMO lentils, water and heat, the product qualifies to be labelled as ‘lentil flour’ on an ingredient statement.

“Unlike modified starches, which contain essentially no protein, Bunge’s lentil functional flour can boost protein content across formulations and help achieve ‘good source’, ‘excellent source’, and high protein claims, depending on the application,” said Helbert Almeida, Bunge senior research and development fellow, U.S. Milling.

“It also offers all the nutrition of other pulse-based flours, including fiber, vitamins, and minerals, with a cleaner, more neutral flavor profile that is suitable for both sweet and savory applications.”

Gregg Christensen, vice president, sales, Bunge Milling said: “Bunge is a leader in providing more of the on-trend ingredients that consumers want, including ancient grains, organic and non-GMO corn, and a range of gluten-free grains, as well as organic, non-GMO and expeller-pressed oils.

We are excited to be adding a protein-packed clean label lentil functional flour to our portfolio.”

“Through this innovative new ingredient we are able to meet customer needs for enhanced texture, higher protein, and clean label all at once.”

According to News Egypt, there has been moderate growth in the global pulse flour market with a compound annual growth rate of 5.1% between 2018 and 2023, with a greater penetration in Asia Pacific, Europe, North America.

AC Nielsen on the other hand argue that within the categories that commonly use modified starches, such as bakery, yogurt, soup, and noodles, the clean label segment is now almost US$10 billion and has shown 6% annual growth for the past three years.

Protein claims on products in these categories are also increasingly popular, commanding nearly US$2 billion in the U.S. market and growing at 13% during the same period.

Consumers are looking for both clean label and higher protein, and Bunge’s new lentil functional flour can help.

Research carried out by Charles Sturt University (CSU) and Agriculture Victoria indicated that lentils can be used to develop food products with a low glycemic index, low in saturated fat, high in fiber and protein, as well as providing a good source of antioxidants.