We dedicate this month’s issue to SupplySide West 2016.

SupplySide West Overview

At its 20th edition, SupplySide West (SSW) was the event where consumer packaged good (CPG) manufacturers, marketers, and formulators came together in search of innovative ingredients. The show covers the global dietary supplement, functional food, and beverage industries as well as personal care and sports nutrition, among other industries.

For almost a week, the show brought together suppliers and buyers from the healthy ingredients marketplace, allowing great networking and enabling visitors to experience new trends and innovative ingredients/products. The Tasting Bar, debuting this year, allowed visitors to see, touch and sample the latest functional foods and beverages.

Ingredient trends

As with any major trade fair, new ingredient trends were presented at SSW. These were the highlights and major takeaways:

Ayurveda ingredients are moving mainstream. An Ashwagandha extract by Ixoreal Biomed, incidentally one of the fair’s sponsors, was prominently featured. The Ayurvedic plant is currently the focus of scientific interest. For example, in a recent pilot study, Ashwagandha was found to improve female sexual dysfunction (FSD) in premenopausal women.

Several chocolate formulations were presented in a great number of booths. Cocoa flavanols are increasingly examined for heart health benefits, and that trend was adequately represented at the fair.

Astaxanthin (from Haematococcus pluvialis, an algae) was one the hottest ingredients featured in the trade show, offering a wide range of supplement applications. BGG, one extract manufacturer, emphasized its ingredient’s natural provenance as opposed to the many synthetic variants on the market.

Not so new, but with a strong presence at SSW, were curcumin branded ingredients, with several companies presenting their products.

Glutathione was represented by several companies offering different glutathione-based ingredients. Liposomal gluthatione by Empirical Labs boasted a superior delivery system, while other companies focused on the ingredient’s health benefits such as antioxidant, anti-aging, and liver health through detoxification.

Omega 3, also a familiar ingredient, was represented by a truly massive booth, the Omerga-3 Resource Center sponsored by Catalent. The novelty here seems to be the formulation rather than any new health benefits, with emphasis this year on stability of the delicate fatty acids during their shelf life.

Cannabis products are having a comeback now that studies are increasingly supporting its medical benefits. Among the compounds being studied is Cannabidiol (CBD). Cannabis can even be incorporated in food products such as chocolates. Other possibilities are oil concentrates, or tinctures of CBD Hemp oil. The market size for therapeutic cannabis is increasing, having reached a worth of $7.1B (estimated size of the legal U.S. marijuana industry [both medical and recreational]). However, the regulatory situation for this type of product is far from clear at this point, with federal and state laws and policies at odds.

Superfruit products also had a strong presence. One of them is monk fruit, which is set to become the next big natural sugar alternative. Another example is sacha inchi, also called Inca Peanut, whose oil is rich in a variety of nutrients, e.g. unsaturated fatty acids and several vitamins. It can be used in food products such as chocolate, nut bars, or bakery.

Coffeeberry, an ingredient making use of the whole coffee plant fruit rather than just the roasted kernel, claims more health benefits because the nutrients contained in the berry are not discarded. The ingredient has a broad range of applications such as foods, snacks, chews, gummies, energy beverages, and, of course, coffee.

Probiotics are still very prominent, as the SSW demonstrated. Probiotics exhibitors were so numerous that they even had their own exhibitor directory. This year, bacillus subtilis was one of the strains manufacturers focused on, providing clinical trials with health benefit substantiation. Oral and dental health, as well as, ear and throat health were the focus of probiotics this year.

Natural extracts continue to move into the forefront of new product development.

Health trends

The health areas with the most focus this year were support of cognitive functions, gut health, immune system, and weight management.

Other topics – US Dietary Supplement Industry

New NDI (New Dietary Ingredient) draft guidance by FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration)

From an industry standpoint, this was the “hot topic” of the show. Trade associations such as UNPA (The United Natural Products Alliance) & AHPA (The American Herbal Products Association) held dedicated sessions to educate the industry about the possible impact of the draft guidance. UNPA for example estimates that almost 90 % of all products currently on the market in the US may fall under the revised NDI definition if a narrow interpretation is upheld by the FDA. The comment period has now been extended till December, and US industry associations are currently busy working on compiling their comments. However, based on a talk by FDA official Dr. Cara Welch on SSW, it appears that there are only limited areas where FDA will show flexibility and consider changes to the guidance, such as creating authoritative lists of grandfathered ingredients together with the industry.

Status of synthetic botanicals

Current moves by FDA to reassess the status of synthetic botanicals such as Vinpocetine, despite previous NDI acknowledgements may also have wide-ranging impact on the industry. Here FDA argues that these Ingredients come from a lab, not a plant, and hence do not fit the legal definition of a dietary supplement.

Mintel GNPD Database

a&r is happy to announce that, as of recently, we have access to Mintel’s Global New Product Database (GNPD). The database reflects new product launches worldwide, giving a host of information about the products, from  label and ingredients to launch date to manufacturing and distributing company, and many more.

With this tool, we are, among others, able to provide you with:

  • competitor analysis in your target markets, including pricing, packaging images, claims,
  • product examples for certain ingredients, e.g. all products containing beta glucan, and
  • landscaping of certain market segments

Please contact us so we can discuss which information is relevant for you and how we can adapt the search criteria to get the most valuable output for you!

Let's meet!

Food Matters Live

22 – 24 November 2016, London

Food matters lives

HI Europe

29 November – 1 December 2016, Frankfurt am Main

Health Ingredients Europe

Your experts

Irene Wohlfahrt
Irene WohlfahrtSenior Consultant
Dr. Inês Rocha
Dr. Inês RochaScientific Consultant

At analyze & realize, we are experts in the field of natural health products, having provided our services for more than 20 years. We offer a unique combination of expertise in natural health products through our scientific, regulatory, and strategic innovation consulting and our clinical research organization with its own clinical trial center in Berlin, Germany. Thanks to our close interaction with the natural product market as well as our extensive network, we are always at the forefront of the latest information and innovation trends. With its international team of 35 employees, a&r is a leading European one-stop-shop ready to guide and support your needs in natural health product innovation.

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