Horst Hoeck awarded with SG Golden Watch for lifetime achievement
Aachen / Mierlo / Munich, 16th January 2017 – The founder of GNT Group, Dr.-Ing. Horst Hoeck, has been awarded with the “Golden Watch” of the international confectionery association Sweets Global Network e.V. for his outstanding contributions to the confectionery industry. The prize, which is given to an industry supplier for the first time, honours his pioneering work for Colouring Foods.
“Dr. Horst Hoeck receives the SG “Goldene Uhr” (Golden Watch) 2017 for his life’s work, his efforts and pioneering work in the field of Colouring Foods as well as for the successful handover of the business to the next generation”, says Hans Strohmaier, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sweets Global Network e.V.
First confectionery manufacturers recognised the potential of Colouring Foods already in the 1980s. Today, a growing number of producers rely on the natural colour solution: nearly every fourth* confectionery launched in Europe no longer contains artificial colourants but is produced with Colouring Foods.
From wallflower to competitive advantage
Centuries ago, colour-intensive foods such as beetroot juice were already being used for imparting colour to other foods. The GNT Group, which was founded by Dr. Horst Hoeck in 1978, made this forgotten practice usable on an industrial scale and thus offers manufacturers a natural alternative to artificial colourants. In the 1980s, the industry at first responded with scepticism. Today, Colouring Foods are completely comparable to artificial colourants with regard to colour range, brilliance and stability. Price stability and year-round availability are no problem either. “Through the constant optimization of our production processes and the extension of the raw material base, we continuously enhanced our Colouring Foods in the previous decades. We turned our concentrates into an indispensable ingredient for manufacturers and observe that they have become the industry standard in many countries”, says Dr. Hoeck.
Colouring Foods are more than a mere replacement of additives: they provide manufacturers with genuine added value. A growing number of consumers is looking for clean label products without additives. Since Colouring Foods are real, healthy foods with nutritional value, taste and aroma, they are labelled as common ingredients, not additives, in the EU. This appeals to the expectations of the increasingly nutrition-conscious shoppers. In fact, a global consumer survey conducted by GNT and TNS has shown, that more than one in three would purchase sweets more often if they were made from natural ingredients only.
Dr. Horst Hoeck held the reins at GNT for more than three decades. At the beginning of 2014, two of his sons – Dr. Hendrik Hoeck and Frederick Hoeck – took over and are now leading the family-owned company in second generation.
The SG Golden Watch has been awarded annually by the international confectionery association Sweets Global Network e.V. since 1972. It honours outstanding personalities active in the confectionery industry or politics and recognises their achievements in the sector.
* Source: Innova Market Insights
GNT Group (www.gnt-group.com) is the leading global provider of Colouring Foods. The company manufactures colouring concentrates from edible fruits, vegetables and plants using gentle physical methods such as pressing, crushing and filtering. Artificial additives, chemicals or organic solvents are not used. The concentrates are sold under the EXBERRY® brand name in almost 75 countries worldwide and are used in a variety of foods, including confectionery, dairy and bakery products, snacks and beverages to name just a few. EXBERRY® Colouring Foods provide a wide array of vibrant and stable colour shades. Since they are a natural alternative to additives, they meet the needs of consumers looking for natural and healthy foods. The independent, family-owned GNT Group was founded in 1978 and is the pioneer in the field of Colouring Foods. Today, GNT has global reach with offices in North and South America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East and supplies more than 1,400 food and beverage companies, including seven of the ten biggest producers in the world.
GNT Group B.V.
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