In an age of fast food and unhealthy lifestyles that have led to unwelcome health issues, studies have shown that the South Asian region is increasingly becoming a hotspot for the diabetes epidemic. In Sri Lanka, research has indicated that one in five adults is either diabetic or pre diabetic. In this context, sugar free and healthy food are gradually becoming not only a necessity but a preference among health conscious Sri Lankans.
After years of extensive research, Maliban has introduced a breakthrough in production by launching the first ever Sri Lankan sugar-free biscuit based on the concept and guidance of A G Ratnapala Samaraweera, Chairman of Maliban Biscuit Manufactories.
“Developing this product was no easy task as sugar plays a major role in biscuits, contributing not only to their sweetness but also texture development, mouth-feel, flavour enhancement, colour and surface development and not to mention its function as a bulking agent,” stated Warna Fernando, General Manager – Quality Assurance and Research Development at Maliban. Therefore, the challenge for Maliban has been to remove the sugar component without affecting any of these functions.
The replacement ingredients for sugar in the new biscuit are Maltitol for bulking and sweetening and Sucralose sweetener, a reputed Splenda brand; both naturally occurring sugar substitutes. Apart from the wheat flour, salt and vegetable fat, two other significant ingredients that make this biscuit even more healthier are cereal corn and wheat fibre.
“The Feel Good sugar free biscuit is an innovative product and is a result of our understanding of the needs of the Sri Lankan consumer. A very timely product, this is only the first step that Maliban has taken in launching a range of health related products under the ‘Healthy Living’ category. Sri Lankan consumers can look forward to many more health related products in the future from the House of Maliban,” stated Duvindra Corea, Brand Manager at Maliban.
Uniquely crispy and full of fibre, this delicious Feel Good Sugar Free Biscuit by Maliban contains less than 0.5 percent sugar and abides not only by Sri Lankan standards but also the regulatory standards of Singapore, EU and USA for sugar free products. The results of a research study conducted by the Faculty of Medicine, University of Jayawardenepura confirms that the product is a Low Glycemic Load product and the tests conducted by TUVSUD PSB, a laboratory in Singapore, has proven that the biscuit is free of sugar or its derivatives.
“We have not stopped at that but have also conformed to the SLSI 251:2010 and Sri Lanka Food Regulation and are proud to have produced a product that caters to lifestyle related health issues that also meets export standards,” concluded Fernando. This innovative product by Maliban comes in 110g and 220g packs, conveniently priced at 100 rupees and 190 rupees respectively and is available at supermarkets and pharmacies Island-wide.