Westchester, Ill.-based Ingredion Inc. signed an agreement with James Cameron and Suzy Amis Cameron to acquire the remaining portion of ownership in Verdient Foods Inc. The acquisition includes a facility in Vanscoy, Saskatchewan, which currently is under construction.  Once construction is complete on an adjacent facility, the company will operate two facilities in Vanscoy, Saskatchewan, which will produce a wide range of high-quality, sustainable, specialty pulse-based concentrates and flours from peas, lentils and faba beans, it says. Both facilities will manufacture and distribute pulse-based ingredients to global markets.

Tate & Lyle PLC, London, United Kingdom, signed an agreement to acquire an 85 percent shareholding in Chaodee Modified Starch Co. Ltd. (CMS”), a tapioca modified food starch manufacturer located in Thailand. This investment extends the companys presence in specialty tapioca-based texturants and establishes a dedicated production facility in the main tapioca region of eastern Thailand. The acquisition will enable Tate & Lyle to offer a broader range of tapioca-based solutions to meet customersneeds for better tasting and clean label products.

Brightseed, San Francisco, has closed $27 million in growth financing led by Lewis & Clark AgriFood. This new financing brings Brightseeds total funding to $52 million, which includes $25 million in previous funding from Seed 2 Growth Ventures, Horizons Ventures, CGC Ventures, Fifty Years, Germin8 Ventures and AgFunder. David Russell of Lewis & Clark AgriFood will join Brightseeds board of directors, along with Elaine Leavenworth, former senior vice president and chief marketing and external affairs officer at Abbott. This investment follows Brightseeds debut discovery of a phytonutrient with the potential to support metabolic health with profound implications for the 2 billion people worldwide who have or are at risk for chronic metabolic conditions including diabetes, weight management and fatty liver disease, it says.

Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.-based SweeGen recently announced the expansion of its natural sweetener portfolio with the commercial production of Bestevia Reb I, a high-purity stevia sweetener and flavor, the company says. Reb I expands SweeGens toolbox for tackling the challenges of reducing sugar and delivering sweet taste solutions to food and beverage manufacturers and works well in a variety of product applications including dairy, beverages and nutritional bars. The ingredient also has earned the FDAs Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS) no objection letter, and achieved The Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association (FEMA). Global regulatory approval is underway.

During the 2020 Specialty Foods virtual event, Epogee LLC, Indianapolis, featured its EPG ingredient, an alternative fat technology made from natural GMO-free, plant-based oil. EPG has earned Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status from the FDA, and is designed to reduce calories without compromising flavor, texture, nutrient absorption or satiety, the company says.

Pharmactive Biotech S.L., Madrid, Spain, introduced its new botanical combo, Isenolic COMPLEX, composed of its branded Isenolic olive leaf extract (Olea europeana L.) and ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata). The complex is formulated to tackle cold and flu symptoms, including throat irritations and coughs, it says. The complex is water-soluble and can be used within foods, beverages, beverage shots and more. The Isenolic component of the formula is standardized to 4 percent elenolic acid, the key bioactive of olive leaves, which has been shown in scientific studies and in-vitro tests to help curb viral life cycles and support the immune system. Isenolic suppresses 65 percent of influenza-A virus activity after infection, in-vitro in an especially sensitive cell line, Pharmactive says.

Flavorchem, Downers Grove, Ill., and Orchidia Fragrances, also based in Downers Grove, Ill., delivered a curated presentation revealing the top trends influencing flavors and fragrances Flavors and Fragrances 2020.” Some of their findings include that COVID-19 has fueled demand for products that promote exploration and discovery at home including many brands offering discovery kits consumers can test at home. The companies also found that the quest for better-for-you alternatives remains strong as consumers seek out products with added benefits. Food and beverages that contain immunity, digestive, and other functional claims and fragrances featuring relaxation and energy claims are gaining traction. Sustainability and the idea of reduce, reuse and recylce remains a top priority, they state.

Blue California, Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., and biotechinnovator, Conagen, Bedford, Mass., announced theyve filed a patent for a new, nature-based bitter blocker technology to improve the taste of a wide range of consumer products. As the commercial partner, Blue California is responsible for scaling and securing global regulatory approvals for the new technology, which will be marketed under the Sensegen brand. Conagen is tasked with developing sustainable, nature-based ingredients. The Blue California Flavor and Fragrance Division will use the new technology to develop custom food and beverage solutions at its newly launched state-of-the-art Blue California Creative Center in southern California. The bitter blocker technology has efficacy across a range of classic bitterants, including coffee, unsweetened cocoa, tea, tonic, energy drinks, and other drinks and snacks containing plant proteins, cannabinoids, and vitamin supplements, the company says.