The incredible potential of condiments and spices in foods - Duas Rodas


october 2, 2018

The incredible potential of condiments and spices in foods

The spices are made up of parts of plants that are not processed in addition to drying, cleaning, sorting, and grinding. Their essential oils are protected in the cellular structures and their content gives them a longer shelf life. In the past, they have been considered high-value goods and have been used as source of flavor and food coloring for thousands of years.

The consumption of spices and condiments was fundamentally influenced by crops in each region and the preference of the people. In addition, it was also stimulated by cultural exchange and customs among peoples. In recent years, it has been growing interest in knowing the gastronomy of other countries, a movement fueled by globalization and the relevant supply of various types of ingredients in the Market. Examples include spices like ginger, cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg, which are part of the cuisine of many countries of the world and are used in combination in many kinds of products, be it sweet or savory.

The development of a condiment can be considered an art. Often, they are the secret of renowned cuisine chefs, translated into unique touches by the combination of spices and other ingredients. When we consider the broad universe of food desired by the consumer characteristics are directly related to the production of sensations.

One of the challenges in flavor development is to create harmony between aromatic profiles, which do not follow an arithmetic relationship with one another, with a direct influence on the type of application being developed, as well as their preparation process. There is a particular complexity to find equilibrium and harmony, especially when there are elements competing with each other, as is the case, for example, of a bittersweet combination formed between salty, sweet and acetic notes.

And, with consumers’ growing demand for natural ingredients, spices have also begun to spark interest in their conservation potential. In several countries, broadened the studies related to the use of antimicrobial compounds and natural antioxidants with direct application in foods. Due to its phytochemical constitution rich in bio-active compounds, extracts of spices and plants in general have been increasingly used for the preservation of food and beverages, being considered alternatives in the face of synthetic food additives. They consist of volatile active substances, which can be obtained by extraction methods. The specific activity of these extracts is attributed to a small number of terpenoids, and phenolic compounds.

The antibacterial properties of these compounds are in part associated with their lipophilic characteristic, leading to associated events in membranes, such as energy depletion. Six essential oils of condiments (sage, rosemary, caraway, cumin, clove and thyme) and their basic ingredients have been tested for their inhibiting effect against three lines of Gram negative bacteria, four gram positive bacteria lineages, an acid-producing bacterium and a yeast strain. Thyme and cumin oils presented stronger antimicrobial activity when compared to other essential oils.

The antioxidant activity of natural compounds depends on their chemical characteristics, which can through different mechanisms: (1) removal of species that initiate oxidation processes, (2) metal ion chelate, (3) capture of O2, (4) self-oxidative chain reaction switches and (5) reduction of local concentrations of O2.  Polyphenols are one of the most interesting groups, mainly due to their strong antioxidant capacity with interesting effects on human health.

The use of extracts or substances isolated from plants is a promising way of ensuring food safety, bringing desirable qualities to consumers as clean label and natural ingredients.

With a commitment to serve its customers and offer creative and innovative solutions, Duas Rodas, in partnership with Brazilian universities, investigated the interaction of botanical extracts applied in meat products to develop a product with high antioxidant potential. One of the solutions developed by this research is a synergistic combination of acerola extract and microencapsulated botanical extracts, with proven benefits specifically designed for markets that seek clean label and potential gains from shelf life for various types of meat products.

The union of technology, knowledge, sensitivity and research to promote the best consumer experiences is a strategy of Duas Rodas, an expert in the art of translating the flavors of life for over 9 decades. Duas Rodas multidisciplinary teams work in the development of unique solutions, such as flavor and condiments, that allow the harmonization of flavor with differentiated notes, connected to what the consumer seeks and needs.


Andre Henrique Marques Luiz – Expert in Condiments and Food Additives at Duas Rodas


Bibliographic References

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