Florida Food Products acquires Comax in bid to boost clean label flavor solutions
01 Dec 2021 --- The Calabretta-owned flavor business Comax has been acquired by Florida Food Products (FFP), with the family maintaining an ownership stake. The companies reached an agreement in which FFP will assume majority ownership.
“Both companies are committed to expanding our clean label portfolios,” Tony Colalillo, vice president and general manager FFP-Taste tells FoodIngredientsFirst.
“Comax’s ability to create natural flavor solutions was a perfect complement to our ability to supply clean label tea, herbal and botanical extracts along with our vegetable juice concentrates.”
The manufacturing capabilities of the combined entity will include extraction, fermentation, wet and dry blending, drying and formulation.
Brewing next level beverages
Consumers are showing a growing interest in products with chamomile, hibiscus, ginger, lavender, mint and elderflower.
Under the stewardship of the Calabretta family since 1977, Comax has become a significant provider of natural flavors in the US. The company boasts a portfolio of roughly 1,000 natural flavor stock-keeping units (SKUs).
FFP’s advanced technology will reinforce Comax’s signature flavors. FFP’s core competency lies in tea, botanicals, coffee and vegetable extraction.
Currently, FFP reports a growing interest in products formulated with chamomile, hibiscus, ginger, lavender, mint and elderflower.
“Over the past few years, we have seen a noticeable shift in the type of products consumers are demanding. Products that are marketed as clean label or contain ingredients that are deemed clean label have moved to the forefront of the consumer’s mind,” explains Colalillo.
“The consumer is more knowledgeable about the ingredients they consume, and this influences which products they will ultimately purchase,” he highlights.
Earlier this year, Comax Flavors developed caffeine maskers and bitter blockers to offset the negative taste found in functional F&B products.
Comax will continue to operate its Melville, New York manufacturing facility and develop formulations in its Marlton, New Jersey R&D facility. The Calabretta family will maintain an equity position in the combined business.
By Inga de Jong, with additional reporting by Elizabeth Green
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