Frequently Asked Questions
What is Gellan Gum?
Gellan gum is a nature-based ingredient that has a variety of purposes in foods and beverages, including stabilization, suspension and thickening/texturizing.
When and how was gellan gum discovered?
Gellan gum was first discovered by scientists growing in a lily pond in Pennsylvania, USA in 1978.
How is gellan gum produced?
Gellan gum is produced by bacteria via fermentation, which is the same process responsible for many great foods, including beer, wine, cheese, soy sauce, yogurt, bread and more.
Is gellan gum safe?
Yes. Gellan gum has been extensively studied, tested and proven safe for use in food for 30+ years. In fact, Gellan gum has been approved for use by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the European Union and the World Health Organization’s Joint Council on Food Additives.
Is gellan gum vegan/organic/gluten-free/etc.?
Gellan gum is a vegetarian ingredient and can even be used as a plant-based substitute for gelatin. Further, it has been approved by the USDA for use in organic foods. Vegan, non-GMO, allergen-free, gluten-free, and halal/kosher diet-approved versions of the ingredient are also available.
Food & Beverage FAQs
How is gellan gum used?
Gellan gum is a multi-functional ingredient that helps make food more consistent in flavor, texture and nutrients. Specifically, it can be used to stabilize and suspend ingredients in foods/beverages. Take for example a glass of almond milk that’s enhanced with calcium – without gellan gum, the calcium and minerals (along with almond sediment) would settle at the bottom.
If you’ve ever poured chocolate syrup into a glass of milk, you were probably left with some of the chocolate syrup at the bottom of your glass. Without gellan gum, you’d have similar issues with many beverages found on shelves today. Thanks to gellan gum, nutrients are evenly dispersed so you can enjoy the same great taste and nutritional content from the start to the finish – no stirring necessary.
Can you explain texture, suspension and stabilization?
You don’t often hear people describe foods and beverages with words like texture, suspension and stabilization – but these terms describe how gellan gum helps make the product you’re consuming more enjoyable.
For example, yogurts are expected to have a creamy “texture” with fruit pieces “suspended” throughout, instead of having all the fruit lumped together at the bottom.
Gellan gum helps by:
- Evenly distributing protein, minerals, fruit pieces and/or flavors like cocoa or coffee, without you even knowing the gellan gum is there.
- Preventing separation during a product’s shelflife (i.e., ensuring yogurt isn’t runny or lumpy when you open a container, etc.)
What other kinds of food/beverages feature gellan gum?
Gellan gum is found in a variety of popular food and beverage products, including dairy products, drinking yogurts, as well as alternative protein drinks and juices.
It can also be used as a vegan replacement for gelatin in candies (e.g., gummy bears), and is found in many bakery products and fillings.