What gives tomato soup its silky mouthfeel? What balances out its acidity and prolongs its shelf-life? Food industry expert Jill Frank brings you this food label breakdown, so you can identify ingredients and find your perfect tomato soup (EU) formulation.
A few highlights from the infographic:
- Tomato puree (EU) is the chief flavoring component of the soup.
- Olive oil (EU) aids in mouth-feel and lubricity and can be used to cook fresh vegetables such as celery, onions and carrots for a mirepoix (EU).
- Corn starch (EU) is a thickener added to develop the texture of the soup. Other thickeners commonly used are potato starch (EU), modified food starch (EU), wheat flour (EU) or waxy corn starch (EU).
- Calcium chloride (EU) is a firming agent for tomato pieces, which prevents them from breaking down during processing or over the shelf life of the product.
- Salt (EU) enhances flavor and brings out the tangy flavor of the tomato. But beware: high levels of salt may negatively impact consumer perception.
- The addition of sugar (EU) can help to balance out the acidity and enhance the ripened flavor and natural umami components of the tomatoes. Other sweeteners, like agave syrup (EU), cane sugar (EU), high fructose corn syrup (EU), molasses (EU) or corn syrup solids (EU) may also be used.
- Citric acid (EU) is an acidifying ingredient used to reduce the pH for proper processing.
- Ascorbic acid (EU) is an antioxidant used to reduce the darkening or browning of the soup during its shelf life.
- Butter (EU), Milk (EU) and/or cream are more frequently used in cream of tomato soup. They add flavor and improve the creamy texture of the soup.
- Natural flavors are added to the soup to enhance flavor. Flavoring components might include hydrolyzed corn protein (EU), autolyzed yeast extract (EU) or yeast extract (EU). Corn protein and yeast extracts typically increase the savory and umami components in the flavor profile.
- Nisin (EU) is a food preservative used to prolong shelf life by inhibiting gram positive bacteria. It’s commonly used in refrigerated soup with limited shelf life.
- Water aids in processing.
- Spices like basil (EU), garlic (EU), oregano (EU) and pepper (EU), improve flavor and can be used to reduce the salt content of the soup.
Please note that this ingredient list does not reflect a single product, but is a composite of multiple products from several stores.
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One Response to “Food Label Breakdown – Tomato Soup (Infographic)”
Jill, this is just a note to tell you that I am impressed about your articles. Those articles provided us with a wealth of information. We learn a lot about ingredients, processes in making products to capture the most shelf space and the best volume of sales. At the end, become experts in what we are made to do without being able to share that information with rest of the industry.
I am highly impressed that you have come to a stage where you are able to share information and you have done it candidly. Congratulations and Thank you!