AKFP Introduces New Extra-Fine Rice Flours for Gluten-Free Baking

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09 Aug 2016 --- American Key Food Products (AKFP) has introduced to the American market a new brand of rice flours especially designed for excellent gluten-free baking. Mel Festejo, COO of AKFP, announced the signing of an exclusive distributorship agreement with Mitsui & Co. Ltd. for extra-fine white and brown rice flours manufactured by Kumamoto Flour Milling Company in Japan. 

These high quality, specialized rice flours are produced using a proprietary manufacturing process that distinguishes the flours from currently available domestic and imported rice flours. Kumamoto’s unique milling process yields exceptionally uniform, extra fine particle sizes with the size distribution confined within a narrower range. The same process also keeps the degree of starch damage to much lower levels than in similar rice flours.

“These flour qualities result in smoother and softer textures and greater volume in gluten-free baked products,” says Festejo. “We have achieved excellent results in gluten-free cakes, breads and muffins, dramatically shown in comparisons with baked goods using other well known flours in the same recipes. In a white bread application, for example, volume increases by as much as 25 % when Kumamoto’s rice flours are used in place of other finely milled rice flours following the same recipe. The soft texture we have produced with these new rice flours is neither too dense nor too porous, resulting in superior gluten-free eating qualities.  Muffins exhibit a nice, domed crust; donuts, a smooth outer layer with a non-greasy, appealing crumb structure.”

White and brown rice flours have 6-7% protein content; brown rice flour has approximately 4% dietary fiber," explains Carter Foss, Technical Sales Director, American Key Food Products to FoodIngredientsFirst. "The undamaged starch granules, from a functional perspective, contributes to the characteristic of rice flours that results in light textures in baked goods and snacks."

So will the gluten free trend slow down or is it here to stay? "We have asked a number of our  customers who make gluten-free products about this and they all believe the gluten-free demand will remain strong," says Foss. "The growth rate could slow down, though, below the growth rates experienced a few years back. However, the emergence of paleo/AIP (auto-immune protocol)-friendly/grain-free diets, together with the high concern for healthy and good-for-you food products reinforce and help keep the demand for gluten-free products at these levels. It helps too that gluten-free products are getting better without having to be priced higher."

Kumamoto Flour Milling Company has been a major producer of high quality flour products for nearly 70 years.

American Key Food Products has been a resource, since 1999, for high quality food ingredients. Today the company offers many gluten-free, clean-label, non-GMO and Kosher products, including its proprietary and exclusive premium cassava flour and provides technical assistance on an as-needed basis. 

by Elizabeth Kenward

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