Business and Operations
Fazer produces xylitol sweetener made from Nordic oat hulls
May 30, 2022 By Bakers Journal
Fazer, a manufacturer of oat products, will present its xylitol products at the PLMA fair in Amsterdam May 31 to June 1.
Among the products the company is exhibiting are breads, crisps, xylitol and oat rice made at its facilities in Lahti, which consist of a mill, a bakery, a crispbread bakery and now a xylitol factory.
Xylitol’s industrial production is a Finnish innovation, and now that Fazer’s new xylitol factory has started commercial operations in April 2022 – the plant is the only one in the world to make xylitol from oat hulls, a side stream of Fazer’s oat mill. Oat xylitol is used in its own products such as chewing gum and pastilles and serves as an example of circular economy.
Side streams refer to waste or surplus that have previously been discarded but can now be upcycled or reused to create a new raw material or product. The oat hull mass that remains after the xylitol production is burned at the Lahti Energia biopower plant, which creates renewable energy for the entire Fazer factory area in Lahti.
In Sweden, the company was awarded the Swedish Food Award 2020 – “Livsmedelspriset” – for its innovative Havreris (Oat Rice). Oat Rice is used, like rice, as a side dish as it is or in pies, risotto, and salads. It is high in fibre, a source of protein and made of Nordic oats in Sweden and in Finland.
Fazer’s xylitol factory has started its commercial operations in Lahti, Finland. The company has invested heavily in sustainable food solutions, developing plant-based products, and pioneering various solutions based on Nordic oats. In the last three years, Fazer has invested EUR 300 million in oats derivatives, and the Fazer Xylitol factory is the most significant of these investments.
In addition to the Fazer Xylitol factory’s raw material production, the factory’s patented manufacturing technology can be licensed to other companies in different countries and industries.
Xylitol is a sweetener produced from xylose. Xylose is found in various plants and trees such as birch, beech, corn and oat hulls. It is low in calories (60 per cent of the calories in sugar) but as sweet as sugar. It has an approved EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) health claim.
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