Imitation vanilla

may be labeled as natural due to FDA labeling regulations, even though it tends to be made from synthetic vanillin, corn syrup, and lignin (extracted from wood pulp).

The Science of imitation vanilla

The science behind imitation vanilla & how it’s made:

  • Chemical Synthesis
  • Fermentation
  • Paper Industry Byproduct
  • Enzyme Conversions

Imitation vanilla is derived from more affordable methods than extracting from vanilla beans. Vanilla is a highly valued ingredient in the food & beverage industry for its rich & creamy flavor profile. While vanillin is a chemical compound it is naturally found in vanilla plants, but it can also be chemically created. Here’s a bit more information about the different methods of making imitation vanilla.

Chemical Synthesis is a method synthesizing vanillin from guaiacol, and guaiacol can be derived from lignin or eugenol. Lignin is a compound of wood and eugenol found in clove oil. This method of chemical reactions transforming compounds into vanillin is cost-effective but it lacks the complexity and depth of flavor natural vanilla offers.

Fermentation can be used by utilizing microorganisms (such as yeast). This method is more expensive than chemical synthesis, but may be considered a more environmentally friendly method.

Paper Industry Byproducts is a method synthesizing vanillin from guaiacol, and guaiacol can be derived from lignin or eugenol. Lignin is a compound of wood and can be broken down into guaiacol, and guaiacol can be converted into vanillin. This is an environmentally friendly and sustainable solution as it is utilizing the waste from the paper industry to manufacture vanillin.

Other Sources may be by utilizing enzymes converting natural compounds into vanillin. This is a newer alternative aiming to reduce reliance on traditional sources.

Imitation vanilla may be chemically identical to natural vanilla, but it does not have the same quality of nuanced flavors and aromas we’ve come to expect and enjoy in vanilla. However, the affordability & versatility of imitation vanilla has enabled it to remain a staple in the food and fragrance industries.

The production of imitation vanilla involves a blend of chemistry, microbiology, and innovative thinking. Whether your imitation vanilla is derived from wood byproducts or synthesized in a lab, it is up to 99% of the vanilla used in the culinary world and it is less expensive.

Natural & organic

nilläva’s vanilla products are crafted from pure Madagascar vanilla beans.

Why Madagascar vanilla beans? Madagascar has ideal growing conditions for vanilla, which results in superior quality of vanilla beans. Madagascar vanilla beans are plump, moist, and oily – making them highly favored among chefs and food manufacturers. Madagascar vanilla stands out as one of the most superior varieties in the world.