At Kemin Food Technologies, we not only aim to impress with our product portfolio to keep your product fresher, safer for longer with our oxidation control and food safety solutions, we also want to offer personal and dedicated services to customers. Through our Customer Laboratory Services (CLS), technical service team and product application department, we put the needs of customers before our own. You don’t have to take our word for it. That’s why Kemin’s partner customer DP Supply wanted to discuss their collaboration with our CLS department.
A subsidiary of DMK Group, and headquartered in Emmen, the Netherlands, DP Supply BV develops “non-dairy” products such as high fat and oil powders, creamers, whipped topping bases, and more for the industrial food sector. We sat down with Martin Hiemstra (Research and Development), Irene Hanenbergh (Marketing & Communications) and Danijela Gajic-Trifunovic (Procurement) for an in-depth conversation on their partnership with Kemin, in particular with our CLS department.
How did you get in touch with Kemin?
DP Supply: “We were looking for ways to improve the oxidative stability of specific oils. We we wondered what kind of ‘new’ raw materials and antioxidants were upcoming, formulations containing natural ingredients. That’s how we found Kemin as a potential partner to aid us in tackling these challenges.”
What do you find valuable when choosing an ingredient supplier?
DP Supply: “When searching for a supplier, we look for reliable partners in order to build up a base for a stable, long-term cooperation. Furthermore, as an international organisation, we believe it is important that our suppliers observe dignified labour and social standards, environmental protection and product safety, as stated in our supplier codex.”
Having a supplier codex means you look at specific criteria a supplier needs to meet?
DP Supply: “We want to create high-quality products. Therefore, the ingredients we use need to be of the most optimal quality for the intended purpose. We look at the function of the raw materials, price-quality ratio, delivery reliability and flexibility. Also, technical support is vital to us, to make a good choice of suppliers. Especially when a certain ingredient isn’t that generic, it has a more specific functionality and the need for technical support from a knowledgeable and trustworthy partner becomes important. This certainly is the case when these raw materials can potentially increase the shelf life of our end product. That’s where Kemin has proven to have the expertise, and they do meet our expectations.”
Kemin is known to deliver not just an ingredient. The focus is always on the customer’s needs, testing the best solutions for the desired application. How did this work for your company?
DP Supply: “For our spray-dried emulsions based on unsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, it is of great importance that the (initial) oxidation in the oil is minimised to increase the shelf life of the encapsulated product. The vegan products for instance in our CREAMICS line are free from dairy ingredients and protein. In this case, the importance of good antioxidants is certainly increasing. Kemin helped us a lot in our search for the best possible solution. The CLS team used several methods to get a good idea of the influence of recipe adjustments and added antioxidants on the stability of protein-free encapsulated emulsions.”
Kemin performed testing processes at their labs. What are the advantages compared to in-house testing?
DP Supply: “In line with our philosophy, our company looks to use more natural ingredients. In that regard, rosemary-based extracts are fascinating. The testing performed by Kemin is a great addition to our own methods to determine the shelf life of our products. In other words, their work complements our studies and testing.”
To speak the same language and have an optimal communication, Kemin attaches high importance to multi-contact. That means you have a direct contact with the people in the lab. How do you experience this service?
DP Supply: “It’s a very smooth collaboration and communication. Direct contact between people who speak the same (technical) language results in a very efficient and effective way of communication. Essential information can be aligned perfectly with immediate feedback from both ends. During the process, the line of communication remains ‘clean’, and there is no need for translations that might lead to misunderstandings.”
Kemin and DP Supply are currently working on a shelf life extension project for a particular product. How can you describe the collaboration with the CLS team?
DP Supply: “Together we have worked on some of our plant-based alternatives for dairy products. During the project, our focus was primarily on vegetable oil with (poly) unsaturated fatty acids. These are relatively prone to oxidation. Therefore, we appreciate the support that Kemin has provided here.”
Kemin has a unique approach when it comes to collaborating, consulting with the customer, drawing up a clear protocol, …
DP Supply: “We’ve experienced this service in a very positive way. The good and transparent communication and approach to contribute to each other’s work truly makes a difference.”
DP Supply has been Kemin’s customer for several years. What makes you remain loyal?
DP Supply: “Our relationship goes further than a supplier versus customer. We look at what we can achieve together. Therefore, our collaboration can be considered more a partnership where we mutually benefit from each other’s work. There’s always a win-win. So, for us, the main reasons for working with Kemin is the dedicated personal approach and delivery reliability. That’s what makes them a valued partner for DP Supply.”