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Project SOY 1997/1998 Winners

Undergraduate and Diploma entries


Espressoy, a coffee-like beverage developed by two University of Guelph food science students, is this year's big winner in Project SOY 1997/1998. This brew of the future, made from 100 per cent roasted soybeans, netted food science undergraduates Nicole Lepkowski and Jennifer Lo $2,500 and first place overall in Project SOY.

Lepkowski and Lo said they set out to create a food that featured soy as a product, not as an ingredient. They chose to develop a brewed beverage because of the current popularity of herbal teas, specialty coffees, and coffee substitutes on the North American market.

"Our product could be an important step in breaking the barriers of traditional soybean use," says Lepkowski. "We've used the soybean in its entirety, promoting its natural identity."

One concern of Lepkowski and Lo was to ensure that soy's healthy attributes were indeed present in the final brewed beverage. After analyzing their brewed beverage, they determined that Espressoy contained 56.4 mg of protein per 250 ml serving.

Espressoy is a beverage that can greatly increase the popularity of soy consumption. Lepkowski and Lo plan to use Ontario soybeans to produce their beverage. They say that using local, inexpensively priced soybeans, would result in a cost-competitive product for consumers.

Second place ribbon'THE JOY OF SOY' - IT'S SOY GOOD FOR YOU

All dessert lovers, including those who are lactose-intolerant or vegetarian, will delight in 'The Joy of Soy. This lactose-free, non-dairy dessert shake was Project SOY's second place winner in 1998. The dessert shake was developed by University of Guelph students June Dalgleish, Applied Human Nutrition, and Jennifer Johnstone, Food Science.

The Joy of Soy is a non-dairy alternative to a milk-shake, but it doesn't have the characteristic beany flavor often associated with soy. The shake also offers all the health benefits of soy, which can reduce the level of 'bad' cholesterol in blood, lessen the risk of cancer, and prevent bone loss.

Dalgleish and Johnstone are hoping to alter consumer perception of soyfoods. They say soy is a delicious alternative to milk products. The Joy of Soy is uniquely rich and creamy and will be available in two flavors: Dutch Chocolate and Madagascar Vanilla.

"Our marketing plan includes educating the consumer about the health benefits of soy," says Dalgleish. "The sale of our product and other soy products currently on the market will benefit Ontario growers by increasing the demand for soybeans."

Third place ribbon (tie)FRESH PASTA IN ONLY A MINUTE

Fresh soy pasta, called Madley Soy, tied for third place in Project SOY 1997/1998. This product was developed by Alfred Campus diploma students Stephanie Lebel and Julie Madore, who sought to offer an alternative form of pasta that's healthy and quick to prepare.

Madley Soy comes in a fresh, undried form. Normally, pasta is dehydrated and sold in cardboard boxes on store shelves. Madely Soy comes in multi-flavoured variations, such as spinach, carrot, and multi-vegetable renditions.

"Fresh, hydrated soy pasta constitutes an exciting alternative for health-conscious pasta-loving consumers," says Lebel. "And its relatively quick transformation to multi-flavoured varieties presents a great advantage to those who like to add taste to their conscience."

This product is high in protein and contains a healthy portion of fibre, calcium, and vitamin B. Madley Soy takes only one minute to prepare, versus seven or eight minutes for dried pasta. This makes the product particularly attractive for people on the go. This pasta is also a source of isoflavones (which reduce the negative effects of estrogen loss in women), it's low in complex carbohydrates, saturated fats and cholesterol.

The success of Madley Soy would not only be a bonus to health-conscious consumers, but it would also increase the use of Ontario soybeans.


Soyburst and Soyburst Sr. tied for third place in Project SOY 1997/1998. These two soy-based beverages were developed by a student design team called Soyburst Inc. The team's main intention was to introduce a beverage that's convenient, palatable, nutritious and inexpensive.

Soyburst Inc. consists of four undergraduate University of Guelph students: Mike Bush, Gord Culbert, Karen Gordon, and Carla Oryniak. The group was concerned that a large number of people, both young and old, don't meet their required daily nutritional needs. So, they developed two healthy soy-based refreshments to help meet geriatric and adult daily recommended intake values.

"Our first beverage, Soyburst, will be targeted at the general public, and will stress proteins, vitamins, and fiber," says Gordon. "The second beverage, Soyburst Sr., will target the aging baby-boomer, and will stress calcium, fibre and anti-carcinogens. We believe that there's a need in both target markets for healthy beverages that are ready-made and relatively inexpensive."

Soyburst and Soyburst Sr. are unique because they contain not only the nutrients available in soy, but other added nutrients, such as vitamin A, D, C and folate, which provide a nutritional value equal to milk. This is important for those who are interested in drinking these beverages as a dairy replacement.

Soyburst and Soyburst Sr. contain soy protein (tofu, soy protein isolate, soy milk), juice, water and sweetener. The five flavors proposed by Soyburst Inc. are vanilla, chocolate, citrus blend, banana coconut and pina colada, although they can be modified to meet the customers preferences.


Graduate level entries


Project SOY's first place winner in the graduate category was Valerio Primomo, a Master's student in plant agriculture at the University of Guelph. He developed a soybean-based frozen dessert drink called SoYummy.

Primomo believes the nutritional benefits of SoYummy will help the product gain the popularity it deserves. SoYummy is high in protein and low in fat, cholesterol-free, lactose-free, and contains isoflavones. It contains 25 per cent tofu and 50 per cent soy milk.

To purchase SoYummy, customers will choose from a showcase displaying an assortment of fruit. Their fruit choice will then be combined with a mixture of tofu, soy milk and a sugar substitute (to cover up the beany flavor of soy). Low manufacturing costs will mean SoYummy can be competitive with frozen desserts currently on the market.

"By creating SoYummy, I wanted to create a drink that could satisfy all consumers, including those who are lactose-intolerant, vegetarian, or those who dislike the beany taste of soy beverages," says Primomo. "This product is not only extremely healthy and nutritious for consumers, but it also increases the use of Ontario soybeans and helps out Ontario soybean producers."


Creating a beverage that has high nutritional value, smooth texture, good flavour and attractive colour was the focus of Project SOY's second place winner at the graduate level.

University of Guelph's graduate student Min Daniel Zhu, Food Science, with assistance of his mentor, Dr. Sam Wang, developed SoystarsTM, a drink that definitely satisfies the above description.

SoystarsTM is developed out of whole soybeans, water (or natural juice), sugar, calcium alginate, xanthan gum and natural flavor. In this clear, flavoured juice, colourful star-like soy beads made from whole soybeans are settled at the bottom of the juice container. After shaking the container, the colorful stars float throughout the drink.

"SoystarsTM is a rich source of dietary fibre," says Zhu. "However, this product is not only healthy, it's also fun to drink. The beads are gelled spheres and have special textural properties that appeal to consumers of different ages."

SoystarsTM is absent of any beany flavour and it's relatively inexpensive. It has more fibre than regular soymilk and it's lactose free. This beverage will help promote the use of soybeans in Ontario and create new opportunities for soybean growers within Canada.

Third place ribbonTo be announced
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