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Milk Coffee, Tea and RTD Beverages

The Necessary RTD Emulsifier That Only Experienced Food Technologists Know

Problems of canned and PET bottled coffee and tea milk beverages

Planning to take on a new RTD coffee project? No matter what unique functional ingredients your RTD beverage partner specifies, you will need to prevent the following from happening:

Fat Separation

The cause of fat separation is unstable emulsion. Multiple strategies to combat fat separation are use of high-pressure homogenizers, addition of hydrocolloids and use of high or medium-HLB value sucrose esters of fatty acids from Ryoto.


Photo Source: Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation

Close up look of PET bottles of RTD milk coffee with Ryoto Sugar Esters (left picture showing clear bottle) and without Ryoto Sugar Esters (right picture showing white residues)

Protein denaturation and insoluble coffee extract result in precipitation.

Reducing the temperature heat treatment can reduce protein precipitation and use of Ryoto Sugar Esters (high HLB) can further protect proteins from denaturing.

Coffee extracts can be made more soluble by enzymatic treatment or addition of carrageenan.


Thermophilic spore-forming bacteria are the culprits in spoilage of canned or bottled milk coffees.

While heat treatment is effective in killing some of the bacteria, others which are highly resistant to heat (present even above 121 degrees Celsius), will grow flat sour bacteria and cause spoilage.

Mono-palmitic Ryoto Sugar Esters have been tested to effectively inhibit the growth of thermophilic bacteria.

What are the 3 main benefits of Ryoto Sugar Esters use in RTD milk coffee and tea?

Antibacterial effects that protect and prolong the shelf life of RTD canned or bottled milk coffee.

Stabilizing milk emulsion reduces lipolysis or fat separation by stabilizing the coalescence of fat microglobules during homogenization.

Protection of proteins from denaturation and contributes to a smooth, silky taste and mouthfeel.

Can Ryoto Sugar Esters be used in “natural” labels on RTD drinks?

With increasing emphasis on health in beverage consumerism, “natural” label has been popular and formed the driver in beverage sales. More recent use of natural sweeteners like stevia, lo han guo, maltitol or erythritol as well as functional ingredients like chia seeds, inulin fibre and others become more popular. With different nutritional requirements, formulators find it increasingly difficult to create similar levels of creaminess, textures and mouthfeel as the conventional RTD milk teas or coffees.

Ryoto Sugar Esters are not preservatives like sodium benzoate. They are plant-based, with sugar extracted from cane sugar and used oils from palm. Hence, Ryoto Sugar Esters have been used in RTD beverages with “natural” labels.

Without preservatives, Ryoto Sugar Esters keep the RTD drink safe from microbes’ growth as heat-resistant microbes have shown to grow and reduce the shelf life of canned or bottled RTD drinks.

Ryoto Sugar Esters

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