Want your new vegetarian specialty to smell like roast beef? Think your healthy chicken dogs might sell better if they tasted like traditional hot dogs? Need to market your zesty “pork and beans” without the pork? You’ve come to the right place…
If you think foods like tofu have to be boring, you need to experience tongue-tingling variations like “chili lime,” or “lemon basil,” made with special zip, thanks to Dr. William L. Baugher, Ph.D. and his team at Blue Mountain Flavors.
In 1988, Dr. Baugher, a highly-trained flavor chemist, started his own business in his basement with just a hot plate. But he also had three keys to success -- a great vision, a supportive family, and an understanding of how to create unique flavors that tasted naturally delicious. He decided to call his business Blue Mountain Enterprises, Inc., a name now known and respected by discerning food manufacturers worldwide.
One of his early successes was a special gravy flavoring that tasted like roasted pork. One restaurant chain proudly claimed that its pork gravy was especially delectable when served over piping hot biscuits. Indeed, Blue Mountain’s pork flavoring in gravy was a big hit, even though there wasn’t any pork in it! Blue Mountain roasted chicken and beef flavors were also immediate favorites.
Revealing a Flavor Secret
When asked what the secret is to developing great flavors, Dr. Baugher explained that it’s all about reaction technology. “Reaction technology is used to mimic the reactions that occur when animal cells are heated, during roasting or grilling, for example. These reactions are what cause many of the different flavors that come from cooked meat. Our process allows us to concentrate these desirable flavors. Oils and other materials are added to a reactor, which acts like a giant pressure cooker. We maintain exact temperature and pressure to ‘cook’ our oils. The final product is heat stable, shelf stable, and inhibits microbial growth.” Once one understands how reaction technology works, complex flavor products can be developed by professionals who can make sunflower oil that tastes like fried chicken and clam flavoring that’s made without clams (a great find for people with seafood allergies).
Over the years, food manufacturers have monitored trends surrounding exotic taste experiences. Though not everyone can (or wants to) visit remote regions where rare foods are grown and prepared, many companies want to bring those flavors to the table. For example, the Blue Mountain team has developed tantalizing spicy mixtures reminiscent of South American menus and are actively pursuing distinctive mango flavors like those native to Pakistan, and even a rare vanilla flavor which tastes Tahitian - different from the vanilla flavors found in Madagascar. However, Dr. Baugher sometimes has declined certain flavor requests including the development of a snake flavor for a company in Vietnam and also a pig’s milk flavor for Indonesian markets.
However, exotic flavors aren’t the most important thing to many people. What many food manufacturers value most highly is being able to know exactly what’s in the flavors they are considering. “Clean Labels” have been part of the Blue Mountain product line since the very beginning. It is the term used to describe the simple ingredient lists showing exactly what’s in the flavors they are choosing.
Here’s the way Blue Mountain explains their clean label offering:
The Utmost in Food Safety
As Blue Mountain flavors are developed and produced, food safety precautions are always given the highest degree of importance. Dr. William Baugher’s son, Dr. Jonathan Baugher, Ph.D. who focused his doctoral research on Food Safety, is an expert on foodborne viruses including the highly publicized and dreaded Norovirus.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Norovirus is a very contagious virus that can infect anyone. You can get it from an infected person, contaminated food or water, or by touching contaminated surfaces.” (www.cdc.gov/norovirus). The spread of Norovirus has been a major issue in restaurants and on cruise ships. Washing food is not enough to remove it, and the virus is easily spread from one person to another. Accordingly, he takes his responsibilities at Blue Mountain especially seriously, including overseeing the cleanliness of everything involved in research and production.
Unfortunately, you won’t find Blue Mountain products in clear glass jars, unbreakable plastic bottles, or metal tins on the shelves in your super market or gourmet boutique– these unique flavors are sold only to food manufacturers in bulk quantities in pails, drums, or IBCs (tote containers).
As the company has grown, distinctive flavors and great service (including same or next day shipment) have remained foremost in the minds of all 35 of the dedicated team members at Blue Mountain. They are not only enthusiastic about savoring the flavors of success, they are eager to take on the next flavor challenge!
Blue Mountain Flavors, 4000 Commerce Dr., Kinston, NC 28504 BlueMountainFlavors.com
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