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Chr. Hansen launches frozen yeast for easy wine-making

Press Release   •   Nov 29, 2010 13:00 GMT

Directly inoculated Viniflora® FrootZen™ helps wineries meet consumer demands for natural, authentic and fruiter wines.

Pursuing its strategy of offering natural, high value specialty yeasts and malolactic cultures to the wine industry, Chr. Hansen once again launches a breakthrough innovation within enology: A frozen, direct inoculation Pichia kluyveri yeast product for winemakers producing aromatic and fresh white or rosé wines.

First to be launched in New Zealand in 2011, after two years of local trials and fine-tuning, Viniflora® FrootZen™ is expected to generate particular interest within Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Riesling wines. Afterwards, it will be introduced to the major white wines areas in the Northern Hemisphere: Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain and the USA.

Developed in cooperation with a leading New Zealand University

Chr. Hansen’s new product represents the highest level of technology available in bio-production and is the result of a working partnership with an exceptional wine research team from the University of Auckland, New Zealand, headed by Dr. Matthew Goddard.

“This product represents an option for winemakers to naturally increase the microbial diversity of ferments in a reliable and consistent way. Along with the specific attributes, this strain of Pichia kluyveri brings to the wine an increase in flavor and aroma complexity as well as adding body. We have been working closely with Chr. Hansen to understand and harness the biodiversity of natural microbes associated with wines in New Zealand and develop novel, natural ferment tools that increase wine complexity and appeal,” Dr. Goddard comments.

Never used before

Viniflora® FrootZen™ is based on a yeast strain found naturally in grape juice but never commercially used in enology until now. It is a direct inoculation product (no rehydration) containing 20 years of know-how developed within Chr. Hansen.

“The use of this strain helps to bring out the flavor precursors contained in grape juice more efficiently when associated with traditional yeast available on the market today, which boosts tropical fruit notes; it also increases the mouth-feel of the final wine and delivers long lasting fruit flavors which increases the wine’s complexity in a very sustainable way,” explains Hentie Swiegers, Head of Chr. Hansen’s Wine Innovation Department.

Complete toolbox for wine-making

As winemakers look for new styles and natural ways to express their differentiation in an increasingly competitive environment, Chr. Hansen is expanding its natural toolbox of wine yeasts and cultures.

“Viniflora® FrootZen™ is the best example of what bio-diversity can provide to the winemakers to differentiate wines, increase food safety and facilitate the overall winemaking process by good management of both the alcoholic and malolactic fermentation, resulting in better, safer and authentic wines,” says Laurent Hubert, Global Marketing Director, Wine Industry, Chr. Hansen.

“With this new product launch we continue our yeast specialty development strategy, following up on successful launches in 2009 of Viniflora® Prelude™ (the first pure Torulaspora delbrueckii yeast for winemakers) and Viniflora® CiNe™ (a malolactic culture to stabilise wines naturally while keeping their fruitiness).

In addition we offer our customers services through a dedicated team of specialists that can assist wineries and wine companies in their wine differentiation projects,” Hubert concludes.

Chr. Hansen is a global bioscience company that develops natural ingredient solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. The products include cultures, enzymes, probiotics and natural colors, and all solutions are based on strong research and development competencies coupled with significant technology investments. Revenue in the 2013/14 financial year was EUR 756 million. The company holds a leading market position in all its divisions: Cultures & Enzymes, Health & Nutrition and Natural Colors. It has more than 2,500 dedicated employees in over 30 countries and main production facilities in Denmark, France, USA and Germany. Chr. Hansen was founded in 1874 and is listed on NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen.

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