PHOENIX, June 3, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- NutraCea (NTRZ) , a world leader in stabilized rice bran (SRB), nutrient research and technology, today announced the launch of RiBran Isolate, a product targeted to the meat industry for use as a cost-effective, nutritious meat enhancer. The product launch follows the recent USDA approval of the use of SRB in specific meat products, including hot dogs, sausage and course-ground, formed meats, such as burgers and poultry patties. The USDA approval was flanked by an independent study conducted at Iowa State University, which demonstrated that RiBran Isolate provided cost savings, better yield at the production level, a decrease in purge, and an improved nutritional profile without altering the sensory attributes when added to chicken nuggets and hot dogs in the specified quantities.
NutraCea simultaneously disclosed a new distribution agreement to sell RiBran Isolate in the Philippines with Turris Phil, Inc., a division of Leysam, a Philippines-based manufacturer and distributor of food and beverages throughout Southeast Asia. "We have received our initial order of multiple container-loads of RiBran Isolate and anticipate increased orders to supply our customers as they realize the wide range of benefits RiBran Isolate provides in place of traditional meat enhancers," said Bernard Chu, President of Leysam.
"Rick Crowder, Vice President of Industrial Commodities Inc, a direct, contracted, large food-ingredient distributor based in Richmond, Virginia said, "We believe that partial or total substitution of a cost-effective, healthful ingredient like RiBran Isolate in place of soy protein isolate, mustard flour, modified food starch, maltodextrin and other fibers will be very appealing to our broad base of customers. We project that by this time next year, we will be moving approximately 40 million pounds annually of RiBran Isolate to the meat industry in the U.S."
NutraCea also announced that it has established relationships with a number of food-ingredient distributors in the European Union, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand to distribute RiBran Isolate. Kody Newland, NutraCea's Senior Vice President of Sales, said, "We have proactively sought to establish new business relationships in a number of international markets, and we expect to begin shipping to these markets in 2008."
Some of the Iowa State study's conclusions, as mentioned above, were supported recently in an independent white paper written by world-renowned author and researcher Henk Hoogenkamp. The paper, entitled, "Is RiBran Isolate the New Soy Protein?" examines the growing potential for SRB in meat processing and enhancement and is slated to be published in two of the leading peer-reviewed journals in the meat science industry. Mr. Hoogenkamp states that soy proteins are the most widely used functional ingredients of vegetable origin, in spite of the fact that "a significant number of American consumers ... consider the taste of soy ... to be a main barrier." On the other hand, he elaborates, "SRB has a very clean flavour, while maintaining textural properties in emulsified meats." Hoogenkamp adds that "RiBran Isolate is an all-natural functional ingredient, non-GMO (genetically modified organism) and non-allergenic ... .an added bonus of stabilized rice bran is its ability to manage freeze/thaw stability and increase shelf life, due to the naturally occurring, high anti-oxidative properties that extend shelf life." He conjectures that RiBran Isolate could make a very cost-effective alternative to soy in an environment of rising food prices and concludes that RiBran Isolate is a "promising new functional ingredient" that shows potential for total or partial soy protein replacement in formulated meat products."
NutraCea's Kody Newland said, "We are gratified that a number of experts have begun to recognize the tremendous value of stabilized rice bran in a wide range of applications, and we are moving swiftly to capitalize on that rising awareness in the food industry worldwide."
Turris Phil Inc., a division of Leysam, is a privately-owned, proactive distribution and blending Company of functional ingredients marketed to the food, dairy, and meat industry throughout Southeast Asia. They serve as a premier distributor of frozen food and meat to quick-service restaurants.
About Industrial Commodities, Inc.
Industrial Commodities, Inc. (ICI) is a national food and beverage ingredient distributor headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. In business since 1979, ICI currently services over 650 customers in the meat and poultry, baking and confectionary, dairy, and pharmaceutical industries. Through 15 sales associates and 19 distribution centers across the nation, ICI distributes over 100 million pounds of ingredients every year. Please visit www.industrialcommodities.com for more information or you may reach the headquarters at 800.523.7902.
NutraCea is a leader in stabilized rice bran nutrient research and dietary supplement development. Through its wholly-owned subsidiary, RiceX, the Company manufactures and distributes products and food ingredients made from rice bran through its proprietary technology and processes. NutraCea has developed intellectual properties to create a range of proprietary product formulations, delivery systems and whole food nutrition products. The Company's proprietary technology enables the creation of food and nutrition products from rice bran, normally a by-product of standard rice processing. In addition to its whole-foods products, NutraCea develops families of health-promoting "nutraceuticals," including natural arthritis relief and cholesterol-lowering products. More information can be found in the Company's filings with the SEC and at its Web site http://www.NutraCea.com.
This release contains forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, statements regarding the successful introduction and acceptance of stabilized rice bran as a meat enhancer and additive, , anticipated customer demand, the establishment of a distribution network, and the impact of these products on future revenues, all of which statements are subject to market and other risks. These statements are made based upon current expectations and actual results may differ from those projected, due to a number of risks and uncertainties. The Company does not undertake to update forward-looking statements in this news release to reflect actual results, changes in assumptions or changes in other factors affecting such forward-looking information. Assumptions and other information that could cause results to differ from those set forth in the forward-looking information can be found in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's most recent periodic report.