Salt is essential to excellent baking. It helps to manage yeast, develop gluten, improve texture, and contributes to the crisp, brown crust formation and artisan appearance. In addition, salt adds flavor and improves the palatability of baked products.
When choosing a salt for baking, look for one that is:
- Very pure, to enhance subtle flavor notes
- High quality, to prevent undesirable insoluble fragments
- Precisely screened, to provide uniform mixing and inclusion
We recommend Alberger® salt for better dispersion throughout bread; Microsized® salt will also provide effective dispersion. A flaked or topping salt will provide enhancement to topical appearance. Hi-Grade™ is a staple in bakery items made with iron enriched flour. Sea salt offers a “healthy halo” that appeals to consumers.
Salt is critical to cheesemaking and it performs functions that cannot be effectively duplicated by other ingredients. It is important for microbial management, and therefore acts as a preservative. Salt accelerates the expulsion of the whey from the curd. It also acts as a powerful flavor enhancer.
When choosing a salt for dairy applications, look for one that is:
- Very pure, to enhance the natural flavor notes of the cheese
- High quality, to prevent undesirable insoluble fragments
- Precisely screened, to provide uniform, even coverage
- Readily soluble, to ensure the desired salt absorption
We recommend Alberger® salt for quick dissolution in a particle size that serves the specific application best. Microsized® salt provides the smooth texture needed for butter. Try sea salt for consumers that are looking for a natural dairy product with fewer refined ingredients.
Salt is particularly crucial in the manufacture of processed meats, for reasons of yield, shelf life, and taste. It provides essential microbial management and acts as a preservative. Salt also enables protein extraction–which can impact texture, and adds flavor.
When choosing a salt for processed meat, look for one that is:
- Very pure, to enhance the flavors the meat
- High quality, to prevent undesirable insoluble material from clogging injection needles
- Precisely screened, to provide uniform mixing and dispersion
We recommend Alberger® salt for quick dissolution in a particle size that best serves the specific application. Top-Flo® and Hi-Grade™ are staples in processed meat production. Try using sea salt for consumers that are actively seeking a more “natural” product.
Consumers expect a high degree of zingy taste and uniform appearance from their snack foods. Salt not only adds flavor, it enhances eye appeal by producing a crisp, brown appearance in crackers and artisan appeal, when applied as a topical finishing ingredient.
When choosing a salt for snack foods, look for one that is:
- Very pure, to enhance the natural flavor notes
- High quality, to prevent undesirable insoluble material
- Precisely screened, to provide uniform and even adherence
- Large in terms of surface area, for rapid solubility that doesn’t leave grittiness in the mouth
We recommend Alberger® salt for topical applications to provide a burst of salty taste. Use Pretzel or a larger-sized topping salt for eye-catching artisan appeal. Try sea salt for consumers who desire a more “natural” or new flavor variety in their snack foods.
Types & Processes
Sea salts are harvested from living seas or oceans and refined by naturally evaporating the sea water in a series of ponds, using only sun, air and wind. Because even the most health-conscious consumers tend to see sea salt as a more natural ingredient1, it offers our industry tremendous opportunities to reach new audiences and grow existing ones.
Cargill’s sea salts add a clean salty flavor to foods. Topping sea salts offer a texture that is pleasing and its large, rough crystals add “artisan” eye appeal. Consumer preference for sea salt has grown steadily with 95% of households surveyed now reporting they are aware of it and 4 out of 5 saying they would be “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to purchase a product with sea salt rather than table salt.1
Cargill is proud to be the only fully-integrated domestic producer of sea salt in the U.S. We offer a broad portfolio of sea salts, with varieties to fit any food application.
1 Cargill proprietary research 2011
Alberger® Brand Salts
The Alberger® salt manufacturing process creates salts with maximum flavor, utility and functionality. The Alberger® families of specialty salts are produced in an open-pan evaporation environment; this creates salts with multifaceted crystals that provide a larger surface area and lower bulk density than granulated salts. Cargill is the only manufacturer in the U.S. currently using this process to produce these unique salts.
The result of this unique process is a salt that offers high adherence, rapid solubility, uniform blending and high liquid absorbance. These qualities provide quick flavor burst and uniform dispersion in food products resulting in a quality eating experience. Cargill offers the Alberger® brand of salts in a range of sizes and additive packages – including many that are additive free, to support specific food manufacturing needs.
FlakeSelect™ Functional System
Common granulated salt or potassium chloride has low to moderate functionality, in some food applications. But flaked salts—due to their shape—offer greater surface area, lower bulk density and increased solubility and blending characteristics, providing even salt coverage, often with less volume of salt.
Cargill offers a range of unique flaked salts, including sea salt and potassium chloride, and agglomerations of salt/sea salt and potassium chloride, in sizes from flour to extra-coarse. There is a FlakeSelect™ salt appropriate for nearly every food industry application, whether you are looking to reduce sodium or simply looking for sea salts with better performance.
Non-Sodium Salts and Blends
For food products that require less sodium, there is a variety of non-sodium or sodium-reduced alternatives available.
A reduced-sodium blend typically consists of a mix of sodium chloride with a non-sodium based salt, such as potassium chloride. Potassium chloride provides much of the same functionality as sodium chloride and generally provides minimal effect on texture and appearance. Typically, potassium chloride or a potassium chloride blend provides similar salty flavor as salt, especially at lower usage levels. At higher usage levels using a blend with a flavor enhancer may be most suitable.
Non-sodium salts, or salt replacement products, can often fulfill the functional role of sodium chloride within food products. The most popular salt replacement is potassium chloride, which can deliver many of the benefits of salt such as taste and texture—when expertly formulated into a food product.
Cargill offers a full line of potassium chloride based products, in a range of particle sizes, with and without flavor enhancers to fit any food industry application. Our technical experts can also provide formulation assistance for food processors with sodium reduction needs.