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'Unique' superfruit ingredient available in UK

30 March 2010

British food manufacturers and retailers can now obtain baobab, the exotic fruit from Southern Africa which has high nutritional qualities that outweigh other foods

This fruit is said to outweigh other foods on almost every level including twice as much calcium as milk and more magnesium than spinach. The Organic Herb Trading Company (OHTC) has been appointed as the UK distributor for both the conventional and organic fruit pulp powder.

Following EU Novel Foods approval which gave the green light to supply the fruit pulp to the UK, it is now available for British manufacturers to start incorporating into products to capitalise on growing consumer demand for this super fruit.

A number of products containing baobab are already starting to hit retailer shelves across the UK including Selfridges and Whole Foods Market as well as a number of independent retailers. Early products include Baobar snack bars, Yozuna Fairtrade African Baobab Fruit Jam, Baobab and chocolate spread, Baobab and banana spread, Baobab lemonade and Baobab powder for use in home cooking.

The off white, powdery fruit pulp looks like sherbet and can be blended with anything. It is better suited as an ingredient rather than eaten on its own. The fruit powder has a unique tangy taste described as ‘caramel pear with subtle tones of grapefruit’.

It is an easy and adaptable fruit that can instantly boost the nutritional value of many products. In addition to its extraordinarily high levels of key nutrients, it acts as a flavour enhancer, so another benefit for the health conscious is that less sugar can be used in products.

Baobab is supplied through a unique partnership between PhytoTrade Africa, the Southern African Natural Products Trade Association dedicated to helping low-income, rural communities by developing ethical and sustainable trade in natural products and Afriplex, a leading South African manufacturer of plant extracts.

Mike Brook from OHTC says: “We are starting to attract interest from a number of food manufacturers who are looking to roll out their own baobab lines from smoothies to cereal bars and to take advantage of the booming market in healthy foods. Baobab is exceptionally adaptable and we are very excited about its wide range of uses as an ingredient.”

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