Private Label Meal Replacements
When it comes to blending and packing private label meal replacements (MRP) we are in a league of our own. Our finished products, packed for various brands, are available on retail shelves all over the world.
High street retailers use our expertise to advise and develop private label meal replacements. Our knowledge has helped gain brands and private label options customer loyalty and an elevated brand basket spend.
Shakes are still the most popular delivery format, however, bars, cakes, pancakes, cookies and waffles are all emerging with great success.
Meal replacement (MRP) Facts
A ‘meal replacement for weight control’ is defined in Commission Directive 96/8/EC of 26 February 1996 on foods intended for use in energy-restricted diets for weight reduction.
The final formulation must meet the following criteria (per serving):
- Energy provided by an MRP shall not be less than 840 kJ (200 kcal) and cannot surpass 1,680 kJ (400 kcal) per serving.
- No less than 25% and no more than 50% of the total energy of the product can be from a protein source.
- Only a 30% maximum of the total available energy can come from fat.
- A 1g minimum dosage of linoleic acid (in the form of glycerides) must be included.
- The blend will need to include 30% of the dietary reference values of vitamins and minerals for adults.
- No less than 500mg of potassium per serving.
Registered claims that you can make for your private label meal replacements
A correctly dosed meal replacement, developed for weight control, can use the following EFSA-approved health claims:
- Substituting one daily meal of an energy-restricted diet with a meal replacement contributes to the maintenance of weight after weight loss.
- Substituting two daily meals of an energy-restricted diet with meal replacements contributes to weight loss.
When evaluating the evidence, EFSA concluded that meal replacements (MRP’s) are able to promote “safe, effective and healthy weight loss; greater than that which can be achieved with conventional calorie counting”. EFSA also concluded that “significantly better weight maintenance after weight loss can be achieved when meal replacements are used in the weight maintenance phase”, this allows us to understand that MRP’s have a place in various dieting techniques.
When using meal replacements within a calorie controlled diet, it has been proven that users will lose on average 7% of their body weight within 12 weeks (Heymsfield et al., 2003).
The shake is the most popular meal replacement format, although other delivery methods are now available.
Manufacturing private label meal replacements
Despite being tightly regulated by EU law, we can still offer a high level of flexibility when it comes to creating a bespoke meal replacement product for your brand.
We take care of all of the technical requirements, while still giving you the opportunity to be as creative and original as possible.
Depending on the particular target customer, we can help you to achieve a variety of on-pack nutrition claims, including ‘low sugar’, ‘low fat’, ‘high fibre’, ‘vegan-friendly’, ‘a source of omega-3’ and ‘naturally flavoured and sweetened’.
And when it comes to creating the right flavour, aroma and texture for your product, the possibilities are also endless. We can help you to develop a delicious range of hot and/or cold flavours, ranging from sweet to savoury, and can even produce limited edition flavours containing inclusions.
Convinced that you need a meal replacement in your product portfolio?
Call us to start developing an ingredient profile suitable for your brand on 0845 838 6156
- Loose powder into various size tubs
- Sachets in shelf ready packaging
- Sachet in multi variety boxes
The ingredient lowdown
When people diet, they are at risk of missing out on vital food groups or in the case of low-calorie diets the consumers can leave themselves with serious deficiencies of protein, carbohydrates, fibre and a range of vitamins and minerals.
The law around developing a meal replacement means that a consumer is within safe zones and not missing out on crucial nutrients, thus making a meal replacement plan safe and effective.
The below sources of nutrition give us room to adapt private label meal replacements to your brands’ ideal specification:
As a source of protein, the options are exciting and far from limited. Developing your MRP may start with a vegetarian approach that will allow you to select ingredients such as soy protein, hemp protein, pea protein, rice protein, mung bean protein and the list goes on.
More expensive and fashionable options have also entered the market such as watermelon protein. It is important to remember that the more unique the source, generally, the more expensive it will be.
On a more mainstream approach, it is common to see whey proteins in the form of a concentrate and isolate and often the inclusion of milk protein to add flavour and to boost protein percentages.
Selecting fibre is a crucial part of developing the best blends, Inulin has been incredibly popular since 2016 because of its purported extra benefits which are regulating blood sugar, lowering cholesterol and anti-aging.
In addition, oats are hugely popular because they carry the claim for insulin control. The attraction of oats is magnified by their naturalistic appeal and strong marketing around their benefits.
Glucomannan Konjac is another player in the market, whilst it contains an EFSA weight loss claim, it has a thickening property that develops over time.
Fructo-oligosaccharide (FOS) from chickory root, is also a natural, it is naturally very sweet allowing it to take the place of sweeteners. FOS, also, helps with gut bacteria. This ingredient is clearly popular for vegans.
Psyllium husk, flax seed and chia are also extremely popular in wellbeing brands, the list of grains is endless.
At the entry level of the carb market and cheaper than most is Maltodextrin, Waxy maize starch. Further up the “food chain” we see oats represented as a complex carbohydrate as well as a source of fibre; again for its low glycaemic index. Onwards and more expensive, but very effective, we see the likes of coconut flour as it contains healthy medium chain triglycerides (MCT’s), protein and much-needed electrolytes like potassium, sodium and magnesium that assist hydration.
We offer a range of tried and tested forms of multivitamin blends for optimum absorption. Bio-availability is increasingly important when it comes to a meal replacement because it is so that vital that the human body absorbs as much as possible because of the lower calorie intake.
Our multivitamin and mineral blends have also been heat tested to allow us to make hot meal replacements such as hot chocolate flavour, Café Latte, Cappuccino, and various other great tasting daily and seasonal favourites.
Consumer searches for meal replacements over the last 5 years
Global demand for meal replacements remains on the rise. This means that any brand launching an MRP can be confident that they can distribute to other territories and locations because the product has global reach and scale-ability, thus making the effort a branding exercise.
UK searches have grown in recent years and stores have listed more MRP’s than ever before. Erratic retailer strategies demonstrate that they are confused about the market, whilst online retailers capture more market share.