Founded in 1994, San Francisco-based WholeSoy & Co. produces a comprehensive line of soy beverages, yogurts and frozen desserts with the highest quality, all-natural ingredients available. The company’s mission is to make the best tasting, most natural and most nutritious dairy alternatives from the whole organic soybean. As part of its commitment to the health and vitality of its customers, community and planet, WholeSoy utilizes only whole organic soybeans free from genetic modification. In addition, the company’s soybean processing is entirely chemical-free. As a result, WholeSoy helps maximize the health benefits of soy, as well as keeps unwanted pesticides and genetically modified crops out of the ecosystem.
Food manufacturers are required by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to prepare labels for their products. Previously, they were restricted to expensive, complicated and time-consuming options such as laboratories, CDs and third-party consultants. Until 2006, WholeSoy & Co. sent food samples to a laboratory for analysis and then waited a few weeks for the nutrition findings. Founder and CEO Ted Nordquist considered laboratory analysis to be unreliable since results often differed among samples of the same product. Also, in one case, the laboratory identified nine grams of fat and four grams of protein in a soy yogurt sample – a physical impossibility since soybean extract always has a protein-to-oil ratio of 2:1. He was also frustrated by the difficulty and high price of new product development, since he was compelled to estimate desired nutrient values and actually manufacture the new product for the laboratory to analyze. This was a long, complex and costly process. Nordquist decided to try LabelCalc®, the only online nutrition analysis tool that instantly generates precise, up-to-date FDA-compliant nutrition facts panels. He is delighted with the outcome.
“LabelCalc allows us an enormous amount of flexibility and creativity with new product development,” said Nordquist. “We enter all our ingredient values into the program, fine-tune recipe formulations and view final nutritional results – all on the computer! This is extremely valuable because it prevents a lot of wasted resources – we can create new offerings online before actually putting dollars into manufacturing.”
Nordquist now uses a laboratory solely in order to confirm LabelCalc’s findings. “My experience is that LabelCalc is extre-mely accurate and reliable – far more so than laboratories, whose results frequently vary widely from sample to sample,” he said. “That’s extremely important to us since we always have to assume that a customer or the FDA could potentially test our product for nutritional accuracy.”
LabelCalc has also helped WholeSoy to standardize formulas, according to Nordquist. “It’s given me a tool that I can take to our production facilities in order to show them exactly what our targets are for protein, fat, calories, etc.,” he noted.
LabelCalc prides itself on offering the most knowledgeable and personalized customer service in the food industry. Nordquist says he appreciates all the company’s help through a recent crisis, when a leading national grocery retailer discovered an error in the nutritional data on the labels of WholeSoy’s private label brand of raspberry soy yogurt. There was a discrepancy between the ratio of calories per gram of fat-carbohydrates-protein (9-4-4) and total calories.
Since it is impossible for a precise tool like LabelCalc to generate false results if ingredient values are exact, lead registered dietitian Alyson Mar knew there had to be a miscalculation in the inputted data. After a detailed investigation, she identified a difference of 33.25 calories in nutritional value for the raspberry fruit preparation provided by an ingredient supplier. According to the supplier, the inaccuracy was due to their having previously used an old version of Genesis R&D nutrition software, provided by ESHA Research. Mar then recorded the correct ingredient values in the LabelCalc system in order to solve the problem.
“LabelCalc helped us to solve a difficult problem, and we are very happy with the service and attention we received,” stated Nordquist. “As the leading producer of non-dairy yogurt in the U.S., we want to make sure that our customers can trust our nutrition facts.”
In addition, LabelCalc delivers extraordinary value with an expert team of FDA regulations specialists and registered dietitians that offers insights on compliance laws, industry issues and emerging trends. While laboratories can charge up to $500 for each individual query, the company provides this crucial service free to clients. Furthermore, Mar authors a popular monthly newsletter that spotlights food trends and hot topics.
LabelCalc is simple to use and does not require new computer software and set-up procedures, specialized training or manuals. Customers enjoy 24-hour access to an online nutrition calculator and FDA facts panel design module.
LabelCalc is one of two nutrition analysis applications developed by FoodCalc® LLC, headquartered in San Francisco, CA. Founded in 2003, FoodCalc creates unique online applications for food manufacturers, restaurants, dieticians and chefs. For more information, visit www.LabelCalc.com, email info@LabelCalc.com or call (888) 804-0001.
Customer: WholeSoy Co., San Francisco, CA
The Challenge: Offer WholeSoy an accurate, reliable and flexible alternative to laboratory nutrition analysis for both existing and new products.
Executive Summary: WholeSoy found the process of using a laboratory to generate nutrition labels time-consuming, costly and often unreliable. Plus, the company wanted a more creative and cost-efficient approach to new product creation versus having to actually manufacture samples for the laboratory to analyze. Founder Ted Nordquist discovered that LabelCalc offered greater accuracy and reliability than a laboratory, and also provided the flexibility of online new product development.