IFT FIRST in Chicago

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IFT First in Chicago

The Custom Flavors team will be exhibiting at IFT FIRST in Chicago, IL.
This national event is great for Food Science professionals to collaborate, make great connections, and leave inspired!
We will be showcasing our favorite flavors in many applications, handing out samples, and providing fun giveaways.

Stop by and say hi at BOOTH #S3418 – we look forward to seeing you there!

IFT First
Request a sample

We Are Headed To New Orleans!

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Custom Flavors will be attending the National IFT Annual Event and Food EXPO, one of the largest events of its kind. We’ll be meeting with Food Science professionals from around the globe representing all segments of the food, beverage, and nutrition industries. The intention is to inspire innovative solutions to advance our planet’s food quality, taste, safety, nutrition and sustainability.

Meet us at the show! We look forward to seeing you.

IFT 2019

Oh the places we have been…

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2018 Was A Big Year For Custom Flavors

In March, we rebranded our name and image,
and made the big reveal at SCIFT’s Supplier’s Night.

We attended Expo West in Anaheim, World Tea Expo in Las Vegas and IFT in Chicago to visit with old friends and make some new acquaintances.

In September, we exhibited at SupplySide West in Las Vegas to participate in the rapidly growing sports nutrition industry.

We are continually grateful for our amazing customers and all the relationships we have made and strengthened throughout the year. Our fifty-six employees and their families thank you for all you have done for us.

Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones!

Meet Our Sales Team + SupplySide West Discount Code

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This October, we want to introduce our sales team here at Custom Flavors

Adam Rico
Account Manager

Adam graduated from Sacramento State University with a Degree in Business Administration Cum Laude with a concentration in Marketing.

His career began working for the State of California in Procurement and Supply Chain Management. Later he was a Training Officer implementing a new ERP System.

Adam joined Custom Flavors in 2014 after his first visit to the Fancy Food Exhibit that got him hooked on the Food Industry. His background gives him insight into the Purchasing side of the food business. Instead of selling, he is adept at helping customers buy, which follows our company philosophy.

He enjoys racing fast cars and loves to cook for his family.

Alex Wendling

Alex graduated from Chapman University with a BS in Biochemistry as well as a Master’s in Food Science and Technology.

His career started at Apex Energetics, a nutritional product company, as Quality Control Director where he wrote, implemented, and established their entire Quality Control Program. With his education, experience, and background of being familiar with the Flavor Industry at a young age, Alex brought a wealth of training and knowledge when he joined Custom Flavors in 2015. His initial position was QA/QC Director where he raised our total Quality Program to BRC AA status and completed our organic certification.

As President of the company, Alex has rebranded our name and given us a fresh new look. His experience and position have given him the unique perspective of being able to see things from the food formulators point of view and the ability to perfectly match the Flavor to the parameters of the finished product.

Alex is a former college football player and passionate fan, and he is a gourmet food enthusiast.

Join us in Las Vegas!

Use our discount link below to meet our team in person at booth #3625


A Quick Guide to Organic Flavors & Certifications

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More than ever, consumers want clean and healthy choices. In many cases, that means having an organic certified product. What’s the difference between all the different organic certifications and terms such as organic compliant?

At Custom Flavors, we develop and produce 100% Organic Certified Flavors and Organic Compliant Flavors, as well as every option in between. We walk customers through the different levels of organic certification every day to find what’s right for them and their products. Here’s a quick guide on how you can use them in your finished products:

Let us know what flavor combos you’re dreaming up and we’d love to help create them!


100% of the Flavor materials are Organic Certified and the Flavor is Certified through a USDA certification body



This follows the organic standard where 95%+ of the Flavor components are Organic Certified and up to 5% of the Flavor can contain Natural, Organic Compliant materials.


This follows the 70/30 rule which requires 70%+ of the Flavor to be Organic Certified material and up to 30% of the Flavor can be Natural Organic Compliant


This is a Natural Flavor where all components are either organic, non-GMO, or compliant to the National Organic Program.

More definitions in the section below.

100% Organic Certified Flavor

Organic Certified Flavor

Made with Organic Flavor

Natural Organic Compliant Flavor

100% Organic Certified Flavor

The Flavor can be used at any level in the finished organic product.

Clean label as the Flavor can be labeled as “Organic Natural Flavor”.

Adding Flavor can enhance the taste experience, differentiate your product, and standardize the Flavor of your finished product through seasonal changes of other ingredients.

The Flavor can be expensive.

Choices are extremely limited because there is a short list of materials that can be used for producing a 100% Organic Certified Flavor.


Organic Certified is less expensive than 100% Organic.

More flavor choices and profiles than 100% Organic.

Clean label as the flavor can be labeled as ‘Organic Natural Flavor’.

Usage rate is high, considering the Flavor components are often weaker and some materials can only be at less than 5%.

Does not work in some applications where the finished product cannot tolerate the additional liquid or powder.


Can be used in specific applications to increase the Organic material in your finished product.

When the product formula is near the maximum allowed non-organic content, this flavor combines the full strength of a conventional flavor while consisting of 70% or more organic material.

Cleaner, more transparent claim of Natural Flavor Made With Organic ‘X’, such as Natural Chocolate Flavor Made with Organic Cocoa.

Popular in Chocolate, Peanut, or Citrus Flavors.

Only practical when used in specific applications where the Flavor can be modified to meet the requirements of your Organic finished product.

More expensive cost-in-use than natural, organic compliant flavors.


Least Expensive.

Most choices and most versatile flavor ranges.

Does not require added costs of certification.

Faster turnaround from sample to receiving your order.

Labeled simply as Natural Flavor.

The key to development of an Organic finished product is to have a partner like Custom Flavors who can “Customize the Flavor” to the specific needs of your product.

Thank you for trusting us with your flavor projects!


July Newsletter: Focus On Summer Flavors

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Summer and Nostalgic Flavors

San Clemente is the perfect spot for our headquarters for many reasons and it doesn’t hurt that this town feels like it was built for summer. The beach, blue skies and warm weather are classic California, classic summer.

We’ve been working hard to bring the flavors of our past and the iconic California summer to our customers. Our flavorists have developed our version of these classics with a dedicated line of nostalgic flavors. Childhood and summer flavors like old fashioned root beer, orange-creme popsicles and cotton candy are just a few to bring back the memories.

As much fun as these flavors are to create, time does move on. Consumers don’t just want great retro tastes, they want them paired in a new way. Think root beer reboot when it’s paired with spicy chilis in a BBQ sauce. Or imagine brightly colored lattes topped with whipped cream and cotton candy. And even take a journey to an exotic tropical locale with a splash of passion fruit mango or coconut mojito.

Let us know what flavor combos you’re dreaming up and we’d love to help create them!


A Personal Piece of Nostalgia

Our team has doubled since 2015 and we couldn’t have done it without a lot of hard work – but we also couldn’t have done it without each of you. At the end of the day, we think of our customers like part of the team. We’re here to serve you, but it’s a collaborative process so we meet the goal of making products taste great.


Thank you for trusting us with your business!

Spotlight on Favorite Flavors

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Black cherry. Blood Orange. A twist on classic combos.

The trends in sweet flavors have taken an exciting turn lately.

Black Cherry. A versatile flavor that’s showing up in beverages, baked goods, nutraceuticals and savory sauces. The sweet, tangy, bold taste is traditionally used in jams and sodas, but look for it brightening up vitamins, juices and adding subtle flavor to sparkling water.

Blood Orange. Aside from their beautiful maroon coloring, blood oranges have a citrus orange taste along with a surprising raspberry flavor. Sodas, teas, alcoholic beverages and candies are just some of the applications for this popular flavor.

Flavor Combinations. We’re seeing some really innovative flavor combinations that cross cultures and pair sweet with savory and spicy. Mango with chilis, caramel with salted pretzel, and toasted coconut with chocolate are just a few that you’ll find on the grocery aisle.

Company Update

We’re adding to the list of certifications that we offer. For customers who need Non GMO Project Verified Flavors – we’ve got you covered. Contact us today and we’ll get to work on your perfect flavor creation.

Upcoming Events

We’re gearing up to head to the summer trade shows.

World Tea Expo
June 12-14th in Las Vegas, NV

IFT National Convention
July 16-18 in Chicago, IL

Please reach out so we can meet up!

3 Favorite Takeaways From The Tradeshows

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Wrap up from SCIFT & Natural Products West

The Custom Flavors team had a great time at Suppliers’ Night and the Natural Products Expo and we wanted to share a few of our impressions.

1. We were asked over and over about how to mask bitter and off-notes. Fortunately, we’ve done our work in that area and have developed 2 preferred blends for either blocking bitter notes or providing a general smoothing out of the flavor profile, available in both natural and certified organic options. In bringing your product to market, the groundwork we’ve done will save you time and money. Let us know if you have questions and we’re happy to make a recommendation about which blend is right for your product.

2. One of the things we always look forward to at Suppliers Night and the Expo is catching up with customers and hearing the latest. This year was no exception and we had the chance to say hello to many old friends and make new connections.

3. It was great to make a big splash with our new design. We heard great feedback about how modern, fresh and appealing the new logo and website look. One of our customers even said that the new look made their mouth water. That’s high praise to anyone in the flavor industry! If you haven’t checked out the new website, click here.