Farmer in a field of Chicory checking the Chicory roots Farmer in a field of Chicory checking the Chicory roots

From field to ingredient

The chicory plant grows in countries with temperate climates. Chicory fields can be found mainly in Europe but also in some other countries. After harvesting, chicory root fibres are extracted from the root through hot water and further purified to meet the highest food quality standards. Chicory root fibres are available on the market in powder or liquid form. While similar in nutritional and health qualities, they differ in technological characteristics.

Use in food applications

Consumer studies show that the demand for healthy and at the same time tasty foods and drinks is growing steadily. Chicory root fibres are a well-recognised ingredients with nutrition and health benefits, which can help the food industry develop value added products to meet these contemporary consumer preferences. They have applications in a wide range of foods and drinks, such as infant and baby foods, dairy products and plant-based dairy alternatives, baked goods, cereals, confectionery, beverages and plant based savoury products. Numerous new food products and applications with chicory root fibres are constantly making their way to the market.

Green baby food

Technological properties

Depending on the different chain length chicory root fibres come with different technological properties. The longer chains of chicory root fibre can help create a creamy taste and mouthfeel, similar to fat, which makes it particularly suitable as a fat replacer with a reduced caloric value. Due to its naturally mild sweet taste and solubility, oligofructose works for fibre enrichment as well as for sugar replacement in an increasing number of food products, adding to a healthier profile of a broad range of foods. 

Healthy snack, muesli bars

Nutritional properties

Due to its special technological properties, the various chicory root fibre types provide solutions to the food industry’s challenge to constantly improve the nutritional quality of its products, for example allowing foods and drinks to provide more fibre and less sugar and / or fat and reducing calories. It is generally recognised that a generous intake of dietary fibre is key for a healthy digestive system. However, many people worldwide fail to meet the intake recommendations. By adding chicory root fibres to consumer products, the fibre intake can easily be increased without mayor changes to the diet.  

Close up of a bowl of cereal and milk

Health properties

Chicory root fibres are added to foods and drinks to improve their nutritional profile through fortification with a prebiotic fibre. Scientific research has shown that the intake of chicory root fibre has many health benefits, such as supporting digestive health, weight management, blood glucose management, bone mineral absorption, immunity and more.  

Rustic loaf of bread