Global marketing manager of cultures for DSM Food Specialties, Qi Zhang, told FoodNavigator-Asia.com that the new dahi range, also known locally as curd, will “enable producers and manufacturers to produce dahi with a distinctive flavour while accounting to regional taste and texture profiles, in a quality-consistent way.”
She said that the industrialised dahi sector is growing rapidly within India and dairies are trying to capture the homemade taste of dahi for consumers who no longer have time to make dahi themselves. The new range has been launched as a response to this demand.
“The culture range is suitable for dahi and its derivative products,” Zhang said.
Dahi is a major dairy product in India and a staple part of the diet. It can be consumed in different ways according to regional and consumer preferences. For example, it can be used to create plain dahi or other Indian products such as lassi and buttermilk, according to Zhang.
She said that there is a difference in textural preference for consumers, with some preferring a grainy dahi and others a creamy consistency but that the common desire from all regions is that it must have a distinctive dahi flavour.
“We have several culture blends in the range to be able to answer the different taste and texture variations according to regions throughout India,” Zhang said.
The cultures are lyophilized (freeze-dried) with a recommended storage temperature of -18°C. The cultures are packaged in individual bags for ease of use and convenience and are a ‘one pack solution’, DSM said.
The company said it plans to cover the entire Indian dairy market by supplying directly to larger dairies and working with distributors to cover the vast expanse of smaller and mid-sized dairies throughout India.
Currently, DSM is not focusing on any probiotic content in the dahi culture range.
Zhang said: “[Probiotics] is quite a new and niche segment but the current stage of the focus is to win the mass appeal of consumers, allowing them to get acquainted and satisfied with the product…when we enter the next stage of development, and dairy customers are pushed to seek more differentiation or if we need to tap into health and wellness trends, then probiotics may play a more active role.”
DSM also provides training programmes and support to Indian dairies, helping them manage good manufacturing practice and hygiene standards, as well as encouraging and assisting sustainable and continued high quality production, something that remains a challenge throughout some of India’s dairy market, according to Zhang.