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Yeast Extract – A Game Changer in the Modern Food Industry

With millennials and Gen Z consumers now hyper-aware of their eating habits and food choices, yeast extract is gaining traction as a versatile ingredient used for savory flavor and quality food.

The COVID-19 outbreak encouraged consumers to stock-up on soups and ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat snacks and meat dishes as they focused on minimum social contact. The suddenness in change of consumer behavior has spurred yeast extract sales as a key ingredient used in shelf-stable food.

From marinated meat and stews to rich soups and sauces, savory meals are gaining popularity across the globe. Yeast extract, as it closely resembles meat broth, helps add flavor in dishes, similar to herbs. Due to this quality, sales of yeast extract are increasing, especially across the U.S., UK, and other European countries.

A study by Future Market Insights pegged yeast extract sales at $1.1 billion (USD) in 2019. Consistently rising demand in the food sector will enable the overall valuation to total $2.1 billion by 2031. Inclination for natural food products over synthetic and chemical additives will continue encouraging yeast extract production.

Vegan Diet Popularity Increasing Yeast Extract Use

As consumers are more cognizant of their health and daily lifestyle, veganism has become an increasing trend. With growing awareness about environmental concerns, food brands are compelled to avoid the use of animal-derived raw materials and use natural resources such as yeast extract to improve the quality of products.

Veganism usually involves abstaining from consuming animal-based products, which has compelled food brands to shift their focus to yeast extracts. Health benefits associated with the consumption of yeast extracts will also aid the demand over the coming years.

Additionally, many consumers prefer vegan-based products because they curb the risk of heart diseases. Thanks to the soaring popularity of spreads and spices, yeast extract will gain traction as a rich source of natural protein and a popular ingredient used in vegetarian foods and dishes.

According to Plant Based Foods Association statistics, retail sales of plant-based foods have increased by 11% as of 2018, bringing the total plant-based food market value to $4.5 billion (USD). Whether for health reasons, animal welfare or climate change concerns, vegan statistics show that plant-based food consumption will continue to rise, accelerating the demand of yeast extract.

The U.S., U.K., and India are the pacesetters of the vegan food industry, ranking highest across the globe in terms of consumption of vegan food, which in turn, makes these countries a hot-spot for yeast extract manufacturers. Yeast extract is not just gaining popularity in the food industry, but also demand for yeast extracts, as a vegan product, is gaining momentum in the pharmaceutical industry. Industry players are introducing various products with yeast extract as an additive within dietary supplements and other nutritional tablets, as it reverses LDL levels (bad cholesterol).

COVID-19, Pharma-Demand and Recent Developments

The unforeseen outbreak of COVID-19 compelled the manufacturing sector to come to a sudden halt. It disrupted major supply chains, declining the sales of yeast extract in the FQ-20. In 2021, leading players are striving to get back in the game through product innovations and upgrades.

Leading industry players such as Associated British Foods, Lesaffre, Angel Yeast, Chr. Hansen and Lallemand are making heavy investments in research institutes across the globe to improve their product offering and curb losses from COVID-19 with rising adoption of yeast extracts.

For instance, Biospringer North America Corporation announced an expansion on its yeast extract site in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to support the growing market trend for multiple applications in the food as well as pharmaceutical industry. On June 30th 2021, company unveiled the recent investments made to increase 50% of production capacities with new equipment and processes.

As the coronavirus tightened its noose globally, the demand for yeast extracts declined across the U.S., Canada, India, and the UK. Thanks to the rollout of vaccination drives, the demand for convenience foods is on the rise, giving tailwinds to the adoption of yeast extracts among food manufacturers.

Yeast extract contains glutamates, which belong to the amino acid family, found naturally in many food products. They’re sometimes extracted and used as additives to prepared food such as spreads, soups and other ready-to-eat products. Most manufacturers are adhering to the regulatory guidelines placed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and are using yeast extract as a natural ingredient, while putting it on labels, as well.

When mixed with other ingredients, yeast extracts are considered to be advantageous as they reduce the chances of heart diseases and help in treating various lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular diseases.

Given the wide array of benefits, manufacturers are looking to capitalize on the consistently rising demand. For example, Angel Yeast Co. Ltd, a high-tech yeast company in China, made headlines at the 24th Food Ingredients China, one of the largest trade shows in the field of food additives and ingredients. The company announced the launch of a range of maximum yeast extract food items, reducing the sodium intake, claiming yeast extract to be ‘game changer in the modern food industry’.

Diverse application of yeast extract, coupled with a slew of launches driven by changing consumer preferences, will present a highly conducive environment for sales in the coming years. Considering the focus on health and wellness will continue rising, yeast extract will reign as a preferred ingredient in the food sector.

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