Wendyl Wants To Know

Each week, Wendyl Nissen takes a packaged food item and decodes what the label tells you about its contents.

Wendyl wants to know: Milk for your drinks is not as we know it

8 comments
Nestle Coffee-mate $3.60 for 170g

Nestle Coffee-mate $3.60 for 170g.
Nestle Coffee-mate $3.60 for 170g.

This product falls under the "why on earth is it here?" category. We produce and drink a lot of milk so it is never hard to find some to put in your tea or coffee.

This coffee whitener is a common product in the United States where perhaps they don't like the taste of fresh milk or find a powder more convenient.

One possible use in this country is for lactose intolerant people because the only dairy product in here - sodium caseinate - does not contain lactose.

Ingredients

Glucose syrup - This tells us that the main ingredient in this product is glucose, which is a form of sugar. Glucose is usually manufactured from corn but it can also come from other starches. Per 4g or one teaspoon of this product you will get 0.6g of sugar.

Vegetable fat - This is by necessity quite a fatty product as it is setting out to mimic milk. Per 4g serving you will get 1.4g of saturated fat.

Mineral salts (340, 451, 331, 452) - These will be in here mainly as preservatives and to help the product's powder consistency. They are potassium phosphate (340), diphosphates (451 and 452) and sodium citrate (331).

Sodium caseinate (milk protein) - This will be in here to give it a milk flavour. Despite coming from milk this does not contain lactose, so this product would be good for those who cannot tolerate milk or cream in their coffee and tea.

Emulsifiers (471, 472e) - These are to keep the fat and water from separating. They are mono and diglycerides of fatty acids (471) and fatty acids of glycerol (472e).

Flavours - This will be artificial flavour and will be in here to help the product taste like milk.

Anti-caking agent (551) - This is silicon dioxide, which stops the powder from caking in the container.

Salt - Not a lot of salt in here, most probably here for flavour. You'll get 8mg per 4g serve.

My recommendations

In a country which is one of the highest dairy producers in the world it seems odd that you wouldn't put milk in your tea or coffee instead.

In the US coffee whiteners or creamers like this are standard fare but they don't have the beautiful milk we produce here.

If you want a really creamy coffee or tea opt for full fat milk with dark blue tops or go for silver tops or purple packaging - you'll even see bits of cream floating around in it.

If you are in a rural area and milk is hard to come by, then go for dried milk and reconstitute it rather than opt for this product which is mostly glucose and fat.

- NZ Herald

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