Corazonas claims first with sterol-containing chips

By Jess Halliday

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Nutrition Snack foods

Functional snack company Corazonas is launching potato chips
containing plant sterols for cholesterol reduction, and claims to
be the first manufacturer to take the healthy ingredient into this
kind of snack product.

The company, which was spun out of functional foods development hothouse Brand New Brands, has previously introduced a range of tortilla chips to the US market in May 2006. But by making health healthy potato chips it looks to be setting new boundaries in the kinds of products that carry health-enhancing ingredients. Potato chips have typically been regarded as one of the most unhealthy snack products. Efforts to clean up their profile have tended to focus on making them 'less bad' - reducing fat or salt, for instance - rather than adding ingredients that can actually contribute to better health. Corazonas, however, is targeting both angles by including plant sterols but absolutely no trans fats. Overall, the crisps are said to contain 40 per cent less fat than regular potato chips. A spokesperson for Mintel confirmed that it has no other plant sterol-containing potato chips listed in its Global New Products Database in the United States. She said Corazonas' launch is "definitely innovative",​ but noted that there are other potato chip products in the heart healthy space - albeit not with plant sterols. For instance Frito-Lay makes heart healthy claims on its Sun Chip product because of a their whole grain content, and on its Lay chips as a result of sunflower oil used to lower saturated fat content. However one other interesting launch in the snack food category did show up in the GNPD - flavoured popcorn form the Lesser Evil branded snack company, introduced in May 2006. Corazonas has not given details of the source of its plant sterols, but the technology to create such the product without impairing its intrinsic flavour is understood to have come from a collaboration with Brandeis University. No details of this technology have been released, beyond that it is a patented process for infusing plant sterols into the product. The company claims clinical proof that the system can reduce LDL 'bad' cholesterol by as much as 15 per cent, but the company could not be reached prior to publication of this article to confirm whether studies have been published. It is thought that Corazonas is looking to extend further into cholesterol-lowering snacks by developing cookie and cracker products along the same lines. Plant sterols have most commonly been used in dairy products, such as yoghurt shots, margarine spreads, and juice drinks. Last year our sister site BakeryAndSnacks.com reported on the development of a California-style thin crust pizza from Road Pizza Company which contains plant sterols in the dough base and cheese topping.

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