Almonds are the key ingredient in the development of new nut products, accounting for more than 40% of new launches of this type, according to some studies on the industry. In this article, we talk about almonds’ extraordinary versatility and take a closer look at some examples of the development of new products that make use of them.
Why do almonds stand out so much among other nuts?
The latest data from Innova Market Insights confirms that almonds are the most widely used nuts in the development of new products, with almost 12,200 new launches worldwide, accounting for approximately 41% of all new product developments that involve nuts.
Why are almond products so successful? Without a doubt, their versatility and ability to adapt to the life, health and dietary habits that are becoming increasingly popular among consumers today are the main reasons for the great acceptance of almonds on an international level. Their magnificent flavour and pleasant texture are also two characteristics that make almonds the leading nut in the formulation of new products.
Almonds are an ingredient with a high nutritional profile, and are characterised by their high vegetable protein, vitamin E, fibre, riboflavin and healthy monounsaturated fatty acids contents. Furthermore, they are gluten-free and are 100% natural, which makes them compatible with the main claims of the food industry: plant-based, gluten-free, or vegan or vegetarian products.
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The versatility of almonds in the formulation of new products
Finally, almonds can be used in formulations in various formats, such as almond protein powder, paste or flour, and their use is widespread in different product categories, as shown by the latest data on almond product launches by sector from Innova Market Insights; confectionery (22%) snacks (22%), bakery (17%), bars (14%) and cereals (8%).
Here are some examples:
Almonds in bakery and confectionery products
Almond baked products are highly valued for their taste, texture and nutritional value. Almond butter and almond flour also add nutrients and a special flavour to recipes, making it possible to create gluten-free products for coeliacs, gluten-intolerant people or people who, without having any dietary problem, choose to eliminate or reduce their gluten intake.
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In addition, the use of coated almonds or almond slices adds a premium look and feel to the products’ handcrafted feel and enhances their quality. They can also provide a balance between sweet and savoury flavours or offer a more satisfying crunch in confectionery products.
Main almond formats and applications in the food industry
- Whole Almonds: To provide crunch or an attractive appearance to snacks, sweets or sticks.
- Almond Flour: To provide coating to snacks, as well as crunch and texture to bars or baked goods. In addition to being an alternative to traditional flours for coeliac products, it is used to thicken sauces or as a main ingredient in breads, cereals or biscuits.
- Almond Paste: It is used as a filling or binder in baked bars, cakes and pastries, helping to generate a chewier texture.
- Almond Slices: Peeled and sliced almonds that are used as an alternative to whole almonds when the goal is to include less product without sacrificing the final product’s crunchiness.
- Almond Halves: They help to reinforce the crispness of a product. They are very common as a salad dressing or in granolas.
- Diced Almonds: They are very common in sweet applications such as ice cream, bakery or pastry fillings, as well as toppings or fillings in chocolate products.
- Toasted Almonds: Toasting the almonds enhances their flavour and reinforces their crunchiness.
- Defatted Almond Flour: It is lower in calories and fat, as well as higher in protein. It does not contain oil, which makes its texture extra fine and its flavour more neutral, enhancing the rest of the ingredients.
- Almond Cream: It is used as a spread or dipping ingredient, as a binder in bars, biscuits and bakery products, as a thickener in drinks or smoothies and as a filler or coating in confectionery products.
The incredible development of almond products
If we continue to analyse the data extracted from the latest ‘Global New Product Introductions Report’ by Innova Market Insights, we find that the development of new almond products is a global phenomenon.
However, the percentage of launches by category varies from one region of the world to another. While confectionery is clearly the main category in Europe and the Middle East, snacks are the most popular almond product in Latin America and Asia-Pacific. On the other hand, in North America, energy bars with almonds are the most popular.
It is worth noting that, despite being in fourth place, energy bars is the fastest growing category, which can be explained by the increased interest of many people in sports nutrition.
Almost everywhere in the world, there has been a growth in new almond cereal products coming onto the market, with remote work being one of the possible causes of this boom. Even so, it is still the category with the lowest percentage of new almond product development.
Regarding the reasons given by consumers as to why they buy almond products, the fact that they are gluten-free is the main motivation (26%), followed by other ones with very similar percentages (between 15 and 16%), such as their health properties, the fact that they are a vegan product or their high energy content.
What do consumers think about the texture of almond products? This question has a certain degree of subjectivity, so the answers are quite disparate and varied. However, most customers consider the texture of almonds for new product developments to be: crispy (7%), creamy (6%), crunchy (4%) and soft (2%).
What Are the Main Selling Points Regarding Almonds in Products That Include Them?
According to an analysis of the top 5 industries in which almonds are present by the California Almond Board:
- Confectionery: It is creamy and it can be crispy, smooth or soft.
- Snacks: It is crunchy, luscious and chunky.
- Bars: It is crunchy, provides energy and has no added sugars.
- Dairy: It is creamy.
- Bakery: It is gluten free, as well as a high source of proteins and fibre
Itac Professional, the Ideal Supplier for Your Almond Product Development
If you need a quality almond supplier with all the sanitary standards for your almond products, you should know that, at Itac Professional, Importaco’s B2B brand, we have all the technological resources as well as all the know-how and experience (more than 75 years in the industry) to offer customised solutions according to the technical requirements of our customers.
We fully specialise in almond processing, which allows us to offer the highest quality and total satisfaction when processing the product. This helps us to offer our customers the most suitable format and customisation options.
Our differential value is that we offer total control of the traceability of our almonds at all stages of the process: from their cultivation to the product’s final delivery. In this way, the entire production chain benefits—from the farmer to the consumer. Our brand gains prestige and trust from suppliers and product developers, who get access to first-class ingredients for their innovations. Meanwhile, end consumers can enjoy safe, healthy and sustainable nuts in many different products and recipes. Contact us for more information.
DISCOVER THE LATEST INNOVATIONS WITH ALMONDS AND PEANUTS IN NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENTS
● Produce Business. Retailers Should Tout Versatility of Almonds.
● Almond Board of California. Almond forms for every function.
● Innova Market Insights, Global New Product Introductions Report, 2020.