QAI is not a consulting body, but it offers certification information and guidance to clients and potential clients. QAI is focused on the ongoing education of the organic community and consumers.
QAI currently certifies 17 companies that manufacture flavors, such as Citroil Enterprises, Danisco USA Inc., David Michael & Co., Frutarom USA Inc., Moore Ingredients Ltd., Sensient Flavors Inc., and Virginia Dare Extract Co. The certification process takes eight to 10 weeks from the time QAI receives and deems the application complete.
There’s no doubt that organic foods are becoming mainstream, with natural food stores like Whole Foods Market leading the way for more mass-market chains (including Wal-Mart) to add organic products. According to the Organic Trade Association (OTA), the overall organic food market has grown 28% since 2003, reaching $16 billion in 2006. With the increase in demand, food and beverage manufacturers are increasingly turning to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Organic seal as a mark of approval. In fact, according to the OTA’s 2006 Manufacturer Survey, over 50% of respondents reported that the USDA label increased their ability to generate sales of organic products. As the organic industry grows, regulations and labeling requirements also are changing. How can flavorists keep up? P&F magazine recently spoke with QAI technical specialist Jessica Walden to get the answers to top questions we received from you—the flavorists.