15 Apr 6 Steps to Streamline Product Development of a Food Product
- Know your market and customer – plan where you want to sell your food and who is the target market, define these properties.
E.g. Healthy active adult male 20 – 30 years old who is interested in eating healthy and staying active, sell online, health food stores, or at gyms or personal trainers
- Identify key properties of the food:
- Texture e.g. crunchy, soft to bite, hard, smooth etc
- Nutrient claims e.g. Good source of Protein, Low in sugar, Low in Fat
- Other product claims e.g. No dairy, No soy, Vegan etc
- What size pack? e.g. 250 ml, 500 g, 1 kg etc
- What is your serving size? e.g. 20 g, 100ml, one bar 50 g, 2 scoops 50 g etc
- What type of proposed packaging? e.g. Glass bottle, stand-up pouch, PET container with screw lid, Plastic tray with film
- How should the product be stored? e.g. chilled, frozen, shelf stable at room temperature
- How will the consumer use it and what is the directions for use? e.g. use two scoops and mix in water until evenly blended, heat in moderate over for 20 minutes
- Standardise your recipe and process:
- Weigh everything out including liquids
- Document recipe and process
- Take temperatures of all heating steps
- Record times of mixing and heating
- Record any weight losses or wastage
- Standardise your raw materials:
- Buy commercially available raw materials
- Identify the specific raw material properties required for your product formulation and process e.g. fine grade powder so it dissolves easily, dehydrated vegetable because making a dry powder blend, heat stable flavour because the product requires heating to be shelf stable, a preservative that will work in high pH, … to name a few.
- Source suppliers who can consistently supply this raw material and provide all the necessary technical data required for your product manufacturing and labelling e.g. like a product specification sheet
- Determine what are the key issues when scaling my processes to a larger batch?
Some examples include:
- Maximum capacity of my equipment – pan is 5L, so to scale up a much larger tank is needed
- What temperature do I need to heat to? Does my equipment have this capability?
- How do I sterilise large quantities of bottles for filling?
- What temperature do I fill at?
- What sort of packaging do I specifically need for this type of process?
- Where can I make this product on a larger scale?
- Do I need a food licence?
- How do I manage my food safety practices?
- Do I need a food safety program?
- Do I need training in food hygiene and handling?
6. Check the legislation
Can I legally add these ingredients to my product under the food legislation?