German sugar giant Sudzucker has united three of its ingredients companies into a 'Functional Foods Group' in a bid to improve the synergies between previously independent suppliers and address "rapid changes that have been experienced across the worldwide foods market."
In what some industry insiders have called a potentially confusing rebranding proposition, Orafti (fibre), Remy (starches) and Palatinit (sweeteners) now fall under the Beneo umbrella with the companies assuming the monikers: BENEO-Orafti, BENEO-Remy and BENEO-Palatinit. Sudzucker considers them the three pillars of the Functional Foods Group.
The confusion lies in the fact BENEO is the brand name for Orafti's successful inulin and oligofructose ingredients that have achieved high levels of B2B and B2C recognition. Beneo is present in more than 300 products globally. Now BENEO will have two meanings (or four), with two different logos — the existing ingredient brand and logo and the new corporate logo and identity for the triumvirate of companies.
At the recent Food Ingredients Europe expo in London where the change was unveiled, BENEO Palatinit head of marketing Claudia Meissner told Functional Ingredients ?the BENEO name was chosen because the manner in which its success as an ingredient had been achieved best exemplified the way the BENEO companies will work, especially in the areas of regulations, science and applications. A communal message binds the companies: 'Connecting nutrition and health'.
"We put a lot of thought into it and decided BENEO worked best," she said. "The name was chosen in the first place because it combines bene (good) and neo (new) and we thought this was highly appropriate for what we are trying to do. The companies will remain independent but will work more closely in key areas such as marketing, formulation, regulations and science to the benefit of all and, of course, our customers and consumers."
In a statement, Sudzucker outlined its reasons for aligning its subsidiaries, citing "emerging opportunities in the functional food market, increasing globalisation, and increased importance of adequate nutritional policies."
"Areas where this sharing of knowledge will be maximised include the three companies' expertise in durable farming, process and food technology, nutritional science, nutritional marketing and communication, regulatory issues, patent policy and consumer research," said Yves Servotte, BENEO Group board member.
She told an FiE press conference: "People are living and eating differently. We are obliged to ensure that we have enough critical mass for our expertise in clinical research, patents, sales, marketing and consumer insights."