How the Innutri Technology happened
All around our world. . . where soft gummy sweets are made, and for more than 100 years, it has been a standard requirement to intensively cook the mass from which the individual sweets are made. This cooking process is self-evident for everyone working in this field of candy making using the Mogul process. An obvious necessity that nobody would question it. An unquestionable fact such as that the sky is blue.
Also when we cook food in our kitchen, we have to accept, that during cooking some valuable and delicate ingredients like vitamins and other essential natural and vital ingredients as well as natural flavours are degraded, destroyed to a certain degree, or even completely.
When we were about to solve this problem, we were not even aware of it. We were already a long time involved with the problem of plastic waste and on the way to develop bioplastics that would degrade and disappear when left in the nature.
We wanted to do something good for nature
Our approach was to use starch as a basis for such a bioplastic. We were material scientists and engineers and had been working with starch macromolecules for a long time and knew many ways to modify starch such that it would behave in a desired way, to be hard and tough or soft and gummy or translucent like glass.
Soft gummy sweets were originally made using gelatine. Only gelatine could provide the soft gummy texture which is loved all around the world. There was not much concern that gelatine was extracted from slaughter waste. But it became a serious topic when the mad cow disease appeared and when demand for vegetarian and vegan food became a more and more important issue.
In that time, when we experimented and played around with starch, we had samples that were not suitable to make a bioplastic, but which behaved exactly like gelatine. And by understanding the relation between molecular structure and macroscopic properties, we soon had a nice range of products which provided a whole range of gelatine like textures.
Experts from the sweets industry were amazed. And we thought we had found a great treasure. Till it became evident that the methods and equipment used in the sweets industry was not suitable at all to produce our starch based soft gums. We worked on that problem, modified our system, and invested quite a lot of money, only to find after a while that there was no reasonable process to produce our soft gums industrially.
Isn’t it so, if you want to realize a vision: don’t never ever give up! – But some when, reasonably we were forced to give up and bury our dream. However, one of us continued secretly. In his head, when we was cycling or swimming or climbing up a mountain. And one day, actually not long after the official end of the project was decided, . . .
And then, at the end of hope, nature did something for us
. . . when he gently walked bare feet through a forest, rays of light coming in through the leaves of the trees, birds chirping sometimes here then there, scrambling of ants and beetles in the silence, crossing a small river with a sandy bed, while watching the movement of the sand swirling up, suddenly everything was very easy and very clear.
It seemed like one of those ideas that are too good to be true, that look great at first glance and then, of course, have a serious draw back. But till next day at work he didn’t find a reason why it should not work. And after first tests in the laboratory, the basic prove of concept was positive. And it also became quickly clear, that the new technology works only when the mass to make the soft gummy sweets with, is not cooked. And this was now not a problem but a significant advantage.
That’s why the new technology was named Low Temperature Mogul (LTM) Technology. It is the only casting technology in the sweets industry which works without cooking the casting mass at really high temperatures, which is problematic especially to high value and natural ingredient.
Also significant amounts of energy and CO2 equivalents can be saved which otherwise would be necessary to heat up the tons of the casting mass. It is the only casting process which is gentle to sensitive ingredients, a feature especially important for natural products.
It was found when walking bare foot gently through a forest, while crossing a small river with a sandy bed, watching the sand swirling up. The idea born in the nature. A new process fitting the needs of natural sensitive ingredients and fundamentally changing the way how soft gummy candies are made since more than 100 years.
And that the need of cooking was eliminated was only the first of more game changing features which one by one came up.
If you have a vision, a dream, don’t never ever give up! There might be unquestionable facts such that the sky is blue. But that’s the case only in our time. In the history of earth there were times when the sky was orange or possibly even green or purple.