Rising popularity of sweet praline nuts
A growing trend for sweet praline nuts and seeds being used within UK confectionery has been highlighted by inclusions business Pecan Deluxe Candy.
While the company has noted an upturn in interest from consumers within such ingredients, its business development manage Jenny Baillie believed there is even more potential for innovation.
She explained: “While pralines originated in the southern USA, they have since become an undoubted favourite across multiple sectors in the UK and Europe.
“The ice cream sector grows year-on-year, currently generating around £1bn of sales in the UK, and praline pecan consistently appears in the annual list of the top 20 flavours.”
Furthermore, she added that the market for savoury snacks in the UK is the largest in Europe at more than £1.3bn in value, with the highest growth rate of all Western European countries; we can thank praline nuts for at least some of that growth.
Despite its recent £3m investment in high tech manufacturing and storage facilities, Pecan Deluxe remains true to its roots when it comes to pralines.
Now, almost seven decades and three international branches later, the company still manufactures in the traditional way – combining real butter and sugar in copper pans to produce premium quality praline inclusions for confectionery, cereals, beverages, ice cream and other desserts and snacks.
Its operations for pralines are based in a dedicated segregated nut facility, supplying multiple sizes from whole to extra small pieces in either frozen or ambient form. The food tailor works with food producers to develop bespoke flavoured options and other retail solutions.
Baillie added: “New trends are on the rise: for example, adding different textures and health benefits such as protein and fibre to indulgent foods – and nuts are a great way of achieving this. Our R&D department is constantly looking for new ways to advance the scope of our praline inclusions, creating new flavours and applications such as chocolate, bakery products and snack mixes.
“Our team is dedicated to finding new ways to apply our inclusions to gain an edge within key sectors, and we’re convinced that pralines have so much more to offer as a premium ingredient bringing a unique combination of flavour, mouthfeel and health benefits to the table.”