A smarter choice for processed foods

Smart Salt® is a new generation salt replacer that can help take salt reduction to the next level without compromise in terms of taste and safety.

Smart Salt® not only tastes like salt, it also preserves and functions like salt making it the ideal way to reduce sodium in processed foods. The flexible sodium reduction technology is perfect for formulation and cost optimisation.

In order to reach population targets for sodium reduction it is important for the food processing industry to move to the next level of sodium replacement in a wider range of food applications.  It is recognised that reducing salt in food products is a multi-dimensional task including the elements of taste, preservation and technological function.

Tastes like salt.

The taste of Smart Salt® in food products has been assessed by trained panels, consumers and professional tasters.

The flavour profile of Smart Salt 50 mirrors the initial and aftertaste flavour profiles of table salt when used on a weight for weight basis in aqueous solution. Other mineral salts including reduced sodium sea salts, containing higher proportions of potassium chloride (KCl) produce higher bitter and metallic flavour scores at equivalent sodium reduction.

Comprehensive coverage of the characteristics, features and benefits of Smart Salt® have been highlighted in a recent Leatherhead Food Research report and many other published articles.

Preserves like salt.

Smart Salt® is highly soluble in aqueous solution and more soluble than salt at equivalent temperature and concentration – thus there are no issues dissolving or in forming concentrated brines where needed.  The water activity of Smart Salt 50 is very similar to salt at concentrations that represent practical use levels up to 5% w/w.

It would not be expected that the replacement of salt on a weight for weight basis with Smart Salt 50 would significantly change the water activity of a food system into which it is substituted.  This has been demonstrated in many food applications including bread, meat, cheese and ready-meals. Smart Salt 50 is better than table salt at reducing the growth of aerobic organisms in bread at ambient and elevated storage temperatures.

Although it is widely regarded that the antimicrobial activity of salt relates largely to its effect on lowering water activity, the ability of microorganisms to tolerate salt stress in other wise optimal conditions varies widely between species. Any changes in product formulation including sodium reduction should be challenged with microorganisms of concern to determine the ability of that food to support the growth of spoilage and pathogenic organisms.

For example, Smart Salt 40 was used as a 1:1 replacer for salt in frankfurters in a challenge test to evaluate the ability of salt and Smart Salt to support the growth of Listeria monocytogenes over 28 days, chilled storage. It was found that Smart Salt 40 delays the growth of Listeria monocytogenes in a similar manner to regular salt.

In addition there were no significant differences in aerobic, anaerobic, yeast and mould, pH and water activity data between the two inoculated samples. Smart Salt 40  functions as least as well as regular salt in this system whilst reaching sodium reduction targets (Mitchell, H. Smart Salt: Tastes like Salt Preserves like Salt, Handles like Salt.  Innovations in Food Technology. November 2014)

In a bread challenge test using Bacillus cereus, the process lethality for Smart Salt 40 was much higher than regular salt.

24 hour growth inhibition tests indicate that Smart Salt 50 has significantly greater effect on reducing the numbers of halotolerant bacteria at 4,6 and 8% w/v concentration than either table salt or a 50:50 combination of table salt and potassium chloride.

Handles like salt.

Smart Salt° technology produces a true crystal, not an agglomerated product or granule and as such handles like regular crystalline salt so no changes are required in the process.

Smart Salt® commercial and industrial partners who manufacture products including meat, bread, cheese, meat seasoning, table top, back-of- house seasoning and ready-to-eat meals indicate that Smart Salt® meets the following objectives:

  • Governmental sodium targets met
  • Very short product development time
  • Microbiological standards and shelf-life maintained as per table salt
  • No changes in process
  • No changes in supply logistics
  • Ease of handling – just like salt
  • No other preservatives or processes required
  • No challenge from consumers – 100% acceptance in market place
  • Added-value products possible with potential magnesium health claims (EU)
  • Expanded range of products for the more health conscious consumer