Tate & Lyle Suffers Great British Shake Off Over Change to Icing Sugar Recipe

The new formula has sparked outrage. Cake decorators say they must stop using the product because maize starch makes the icing grainy. Forget soggy baked alaskas and stolen custard. The latest British baking scandal is more significant than a simple TV show.

The sugar maker Tate & Lyle has provoked outrage from high-end cake decorators by altering the recipe of its icing sugar. This has made it, according to experts, challenging to create intricate designs.

Bakers have urged Bakers to return to the original formula or be at risk of losing sales.

The scandal with sugar began in the year Tate & Lyle decided to end the use of E341, also referred to as tricalcium-phosphate, which is anticaking an agent” that is, to prevent the formation of lumps ” and switched to maize starch in place of.

Christine Flinn, a cake decorator from Cheshire, said she’s been forced to quit the product. “The butter icing becomes extremely grainy,” she explained. “It appears disgusting, and this is not something you’d wish to hand out to clients. The glass isn’t glossy in any way. Maize starch has fats, but fat and royal icing do not mix, destroying it into royal icing.”

The company claimed that it changed the sugar from E341 to maize starch as it would make the sugar last longer.

Bakers have complained via social media of the change after it was announced in January. However, despite being informed that Tate& Lyle will rethink its formula, Tate& Lyle has announced that maize starch will remain. In a post on the British Sugarcraft Guild Facebook page, one member, Sam Harrison, wrote: “My buttercream is going to firm and gritty, not smooth and fluffy like normal.”

Katherine Moloney complained that “I assumed it had been left out and got damp or something, it just would not sieve.” Siyana Sibson said: “Buttercream feels gritty and tried to make it silky by adding more butter but even that didn’t work! Will have to change the brand I’m afraid. Such a shame.”

Jane Hatton, a bakery trainer and lecturer at the National Bakery School at London South Bank University, said the recipe change will mainly impact professional bakers. “With royal icing ” made up of egg whites and sugar for icing, ” you need your sugar to be as pure as possible because of the piping you’re doing,” she explained. “The maize will give it a shortening effect, so it doesn’t have the ability of doing the very fine work. It dries out.”

Hatton stated that the information shouldn’t deter home bakers. “It gets a little confusing when you tell the general public: “Oh, it’s all gone wrong, and you shouldn’t use it.’ Most people can deal with it as they need it locally.

“If, at an industrial level, we’re making 20 wedding cakes a week in royal icing, it’s different. “We will want to have our icing done to be perfect and would give suppliers instructions on how we’d like our icing to be.”

A spokesperson from Tate & Lyle Sugars said that the original recipe will be accessible to a limited amount of bakers who are professionals.

“We continue to fulfil orders of icing sugar with E341 anticaking agent to a small number of our manufacturing customers in circumstances where their compliance with ingredient labelling requirements would make a mid-contract ingredient change extremely difficult.”

The decision to utilize maize starch came following “both in-house and external testing showed that maize starch greatly reduces the possibility of caking when icing sugar has been stored in less than ideal conditions, and therefore improves the sugar’s keeping qualities.”

Tate & Lyle confirmed it was carrying out further tests following the launch of the new recipe and stated that the results suggested this product is of superior quality.

“The results indicated no detrimental performance issues as a result of the change from TCP to maize starch.” the report said. “In fact the end user’s experience should be optimised by the delivery of a more consistent and lump-free icing sugar.”

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